Sportspersons from Chandigarh got a major boost on Tuesday as the UT’s sports council revised the prize money for international and national events. Sportspersons from the UT will now get cash rewards on a par with their counterparts from Punjab and Haryana for clinching medals at international and national events.
In view of the lesser monetary benefits, there was a trend of sportspersons from Chandigarh shifting to either Punjab or Haryana.
Under the revised policy, for bagging a medal in an international event, a sportsperson from Chandigarh will now be rewarded on a par with their counterparts in either Har-yana or Punjab (whichever is paying higher).
For the Olympic gold, the cash prize has been increased from `5 lakh to `6 crore and for the national championships, the cash incentive for a gold medal has been increased tenfold from `20,000 to `2 lakh.
The Chandigarh sports council’s revised prize money for the various international and national events will be applicable from 2014-15.
“It’s is a far reaching decision, which will certainly attract players back to Chandigarh. Over the years, the city, despite having good sports facilities, has seen mass exodus of the players to either Punjab or Haryana. This will certainly stop that,” said KS Bharti, UT joint director sports. “This is the first time, since 1984 that cash awards have been revised and suitably increased in comparison to both the states,” Bharti added.
The eligibility criteria will remain the same. A player has to be either a resident, studying or serving in Chandigarh, and should have represented the UT in the nationals.
“A number of players started the game here and then shifted to other states just because incentives were better there. The sad part is that we too were giving our best and are training hard. The new policy will motivate youngsters to perform,” said international skater Navdeep Puri, who has three Asian medals in his kitty. For the bronze medal in the 2010 Asian meet, Puri got just `20,000, but now he will get `3 lakh if he wins the same medal, and if he wins the gold, then the cash award will be `5 lakh.