116 sportspersons receive cash incentives

ITANAGAR, Aug 29: The state government on Tuesday provided cash incentives amounting to Rs 74 lakh among 116 meritorious sportspersons, who have brought laurels to the state by winning medals in various regional, national and international level competitions.
The function was organized coinciding with National Sports Day celebration at the State Banquet Hall here.
The incentives were awarded based on performance of the sportspersons during the year 2011 to 2016.
The lion share of the incentive was grabbed by the weightlifters with Jimjang Deru alone receiving Rs 16.5 lakh. Gold medal winning performance in the 17th Youth (Boys & Girls) Weightlifting Championship held in Doha, Qatar during 2014-15 and Commonwealth Youth Games held in Apia Samoa in 2015 fetched Jimjang the whopping cash incentive.
Deru created a new national record in ‘Clean & Jerk’ event in men’s 62 kg category with a lift of 153kg to secure gold in the Senior National Weightlifting Championships. His uncle Khandu Deru accepted the incentive from the Chief Minister as Jimjang is currently undergoing training in Australia.
Cash incentives were provided to two archers, 10 shuttlers, three boxers, 26 karatekas, seven mountaineers, 20 Judokas, one shooter, nine Taekwondo players, five paddlers (Table Tennis), one Tent Pegging, 19 Wushu players and nine lifters.
Chief Minister Pema Khandu, his Deputy Chowna Mein, state BJP President Tapir Gao and others presented the cash incentives in form of cheque to the sportspersons.
Congratulating the sportspersons, Pema reiterated his government’s commitment for the welfare of sportspersons and development of sports and games.
Pema informed that the central government headed by Prime Minister NarendraModi has the intent to take the country forward in games and sports and therefore has taken up the ‘Mission Olympic’ under which the ambitious programme ‘Khelo India’ is being implemented. He said that Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports Vijay Goel has personally assured to offer every possible help to Arunachal Pradesh in developing its sports infrastructure.
He welcomed the suggestion put forward by the state BJP State President of having at least one sports complex with all basic facilities in every assembly constituency of the state. He called upon his legislator colleagues to work in this direction so that talented sportspersons can be identified from far flung areas and offer them with basic training.
The Chief Minister, however, expressed regret that the State Sports Policy, which was tabled in 2012, is yet to be finalized and released. When he called upon the Department to tighten up its belts, Sports & Youth Affairs Secretary Dani Salu assured that the State Sports Policy as well as the Policy for Youth Affairs will be finalized and submitted to the government by the end of next month.
The Chief Minister also admitted the fact that meritorious sportspersons who are absorbed in government jobs through the sports quota get completely cut off from sports, which is a loss for the state. He assured the issue will be brought up in the Cabinet and find out a way to facilitate sportspersons in government job to continue playing for the state and the country.
He urged budding sportspersons to avail all benefits in offer from the government by excelling in their respective fields. He informed that the sports policy, which will be launched soon, also offers Rs 3 crore for Gold, Rs 2 crore for Silver and Rs 1 crore for Bronze in the Olympics.
“So aim for the highest, aim for the Olympics as even for participation in Olympics the government offers Rs 25 lakhs,” he said.
Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein hailed the cash incentive initiative by the department and called for its continuation. He said that the initiative was started with good intentions but due to some reasons it got derailed for a couple of years and assured the state government will support it for all the years to come.
Mein also stressed on the need to create proper infrastructure for development of sports and churn out exceptional sporting talents. He suggested that before creating manpower like district sports officers in the districts, infrastructure be created first.
He asserted that games and sports be given more emphasis in the eastern districts of the state where youths are succumbing to drug addiction.
“Only through games and sports we can bring our wayward youths into the mainstream,” Mein said.
Meanwhile, Arunachal Olympic Association (AOA) General Secretary Abraham K Techi submitted a memorandum to the state government on behalf of the sporting fraternity and sought assistance of the state government to resolve issues, like construction of Olympic Bhavan, grants-in-aid, trained coaches, multipurpose indoor stadiums, appointment of DSO/ADSO, etc.
He further urged the government for creation of at least 100 NIS trained coaches for various sports disciplines, initiation for establishment of Centre of Excellence to groom and provide world class training to the talented sportspersons. Underscoring the role of coaches in the success of players, the AOA Secretary General also proposed the government for providing incentives to coaches.
Earlier, the Chief Minister along with Deputy Chief Minister and others paid tributes to the decorated portrait of hockey wizard, Major Dhyan Chand, on whose birth anniversary the National Sports Day is celebrated.