Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced a special incentive of Rs 60 lakh for the six Odia sportspersons who have qualified for participating in the forthcoming Rio Olympics to be held in August this year.
Notably, sprinters Dutee Chand & Srabani Nanda and four women hockey players Deep Grace Ekka, Namita Toppo, Lilima Minz and Sunita Lakra have made it to the Olympics.
“This is a matter of pride for Odisha and every Odia. In order to encourage them in this moment of glory, the state government has announced this special incentive amount. Each sportsperson will be provided with financial assistance of Rs 10 lakh. Keeping with the Chief Minister’s direction Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) will immediately release the amount to the sportspersons,” said an official release issued by the Chief Minister’s Office today.
The release stated: “The Chief Minister said this financial assistance will help the sportspersons in their preparations for the Olympics. The Chief Minister has expressed hope that Odia sportspersons will be highly successful in the Olympics and bring glory to state as well as the country.”
Chief Minister also directed the sports department to increase the cash awards for Olympic qualified sportspersons. He directed that the cash awards be increased to Rs 5 lakh for both group and individual events.
Earlier, it was Rs 50,000 for group event and Rs one lakh for individual event, said the statement.