Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday announced a cash incentive of Rs 10 lakh each for the seven para-athletes from Odisha who will be participating in the Hangzhou Asian Para Games scheduled to begin from October 22, 2023.

The Asian Para Games, will bring together elite para athletes from across the continent, offering a platform to them to showcase their dedication and talent.

Amongst the athletes competing from Odisha will be reigning Paralympic gold medallist Pramod Bhagat. He will be defending his gold medal in the para badminton mixed single’s event. In the previous edition held in Jakarta, Bhagat also secured a bronze in men’s doubles.

Other para-athletes from Odisha include Jayanti Behera (para-athletics), Soundarya Kumar Pradhan (visually impaired chess), Rakhal Kumar Sethi, V Ramesh Rao, Prafulla Kumar Khandayatray, and Pujaswini Nayak (wheelchair fencing). 

Wishing the athletes success, Patnaik said, “We are immensely proud of our para-athletes who have worked tirelessly to qualify for the prestigious Asian Para Games 2022 in Hangzhou, China. The para-athletes are a testimony to human spirit and determination. I wish them and the entire India contingent the very best in their endeavour to bring laurels to the country.”