Odisha gives Rs 30 lakh cash prize to Birendra Lakra

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Bhubaneswar: Ahead of the eight-nation Champion Trophy here, Odisha government on Thursday gave away cash award of Rs 30 lakh to Birendra Lakra, international hockey player from the state.

The state government also gave cash award of Rs 12 lakh to badminton player Pramod Bhagat as per the Odish’a cash incentives for international players.

Chief minister Naveen Patnaik handed over two cheques to Lakra (Rs 10 lakh for winning a silver in the 20th Commonwealth Games at Glasgow and Rs 20 lakh for winning gold medal in the 17th Asian Games at Incheon) at the State Secretariat here.

Patnaik also handed over a cheque of Rs 12 lakh to Bhagat for winning a bronze medal in the Para Asian Games 2014 at Incheon, South Korea.

The chief minister quickly responded to the Indian team players (who are here to participate in the Champions Trophy) complaint that Lakra was yet to receive any intentive from the state government while they have been awarded with cash prize in their respective states.

The hockey players apprised their displeasure towards the government when Odisha’s sports minister Sudam Marandi met them at the Kalinga Stadium here. Sports secretary Saswat Mishra had earlier assured that Lakra would be given the enhanced cash award announced by the state government on a day when India were not playing a match in the Champions Trophy.

A state government’s notification on October 29 this year, had announced that it would offer double the amount of cash award given by the central government to sports persons who win medals at international events.

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