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Punjab to honour its sportspersons; to boost sports' culture

Vijay C Roy  |  New Delhi/ Chandigarh 

In order to promote sports in the state, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has offered Asian Games and Commonwealth Games medalists gazetted posts and cash awards. In addition, the state government is planning to set up a sports school in each district.

Taking a cue from Haryana and going a step further, the Punjab government has announced that the Asian Games gold, silver and bronze winners will be presented with a cash award of Rs 26 lakh, Rs 16 lakh and Rs 11 lakh each, respectively. The Commonwealth Games’ medalists will get Rs 16 lakh (gold medalists), Rs 11 lakh (silver) and Rs 6 lakh (Bronze) each.

It is worth mentioning, the Haryana government had already announced and given cash awards to Asian Games and Commonwealth Games medal winners hailing from the state. For Asian Games medal winners it announced to award Rs 25 lakh to the gold medalists, Rs 15 lakh (silver medalists) and Rs 10 lakh to the bronze medal winners. In addition it also awarded its Commonwealth Games gold, bronze and silver medal winners with Rs 15 lakh, Rs 10 lakh and Rs 5 lakh, respectively, along with a car each and ghee tins.

Badal said, “The state government will give gazetted posts to the Commonwealth and Asian Games medalists. It is up to a player to choose the department whether deputy superintendent of police or in any other department. Already 10 posts have been set aside for the nine players.”

To start with, the government would be setting up one school each at Bathinda, Jalandhar and Amritsar and the Sports College at Jalandhar would be upgraded.

He added the enrolled students in these schools would be given world class training by the best coaches and would boast of world class infrastructure. He also added the jobs will be given to the members of the kabaddi team that won the World cup.

Earlier, addressing the media he declared the year 2011 would be observed as the ‘Year of Transformation’ for Punjab in which the state would enter the decisive phase of the era of new age-development.

Badal said, “Not only would the path-breaking initiatives undertaken by the state government be taken to their successful climax but new steps would be taken in several other areas.

Expanding on the work done by the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party government during the past four years, the Chief Minister said, “We have turned a new leaf in revenue generation, employment generation, infrastructure development, power, international air connectivity, education, health care, rural and urban development and water-supply, sanitation and sewerage. We have made major advances on rejuvenating the dilapidated irrigation system, thus reducing the pressure on the receding water table.”

“We have declared a war on poverty through innovative schemes targeted at enhancing employability of our youth through skill training centres. Similarly, we are beginning to overcome water and environmental pollution, and containing the menace of deadly diseases like cancer in the Malwa belt,” said Badal.

The Chief Minister described the year 2010 as a turning point for the state with projects like the Rs 20,000-crore Bathinda Oil Refinery being completed.

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First Published: Mon, January 03 2011. 00:09 IST