In a bid to boost the morale of the Indian hockey team playing in the World Cup in New Delhi, the Haryana government on Tuesday announced a cash prize of Rs 500,000 for the players for beating Pakistan in their first match of the tournament Sunday.
"We will give a sum of Rs 500,000 to the Indian hockey team for winning the match against Pakistan in Hockey World Cup. We will also give Rs 100,000 each to those players who scored goals against Pakistan in that match," state sports minister Gopal Kanda said in Chandigarh.
He added: "We congratulate our hockey team on this magnificent victory against Pakistan. This victory has marked the beginning of a golden era in Indian hockey."
India had beaten arch rival Pakistan 4-1 in the match that was played under flood-lights. Sandeep Singh scored two goals while Shivendera Singh and Prabhjot Singh scored one goal each in that match.
Kanda said the Haryana government was giving a number of cash incentives to promote sports on a large scale in the state. He added that outstanding sportspersons would be appointed in Haryana Police on high positions.
Just a few weeks before the start of the World Cup, in January, Indian hockey was shrouded by controversy related to the payments to players. They had boycotted the training camp at Pune for a few days due to non-payment of their match fees by Hockey India (HI).