Governor and Chief Minister heap praises on State sportspersons
IMPHAL, October 11: `We should have more openness and bring in the best governance model so that our sports persons feel that they have our unstinted support,` said State Governor Dr DK Paul.
The Governor and the State Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh today attended a felicitation ceremony of the XVII Asian Games, 2014 participants and medalists today at the Indoor Stadium, Khuman Lampak.
`The recent initiative of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports for a sports code is an effort in the right direction and I feel that all will adopt it in the spirit it was framed,` the Governor said.
He also appreciated the various State-level sports associations, State government and the Manipur Olympic Association for their efforts in producing sports persons of high calibers and said `I feel that Manipur has adopted the correct strategy in sports whereby thrust is given to the disciplines where Manipuris have a natural talent.`
Manipur has come to be known as the powerhouse of sports and the club culture which of the State like in other sports developed countries has helped the growth of sports in the State, he observed.
He further expressed that there is still need to support the State-level and district level sports associations which have been playing a vital role in grooming the talented sportspersons at the grass-root level.
He also said that many States are coming out with cash awards for players of their own but it may not be fair to compare the awards among different States as some States do not give any cash awards and those which do may depend on their respective capacity.
While there is a bigger and tougher challenges ahead like the Rio Olympic and some of our players may get the opportunity to participate in the mega sporting event, he said.
State Chief Minister Okra Ibobi Singh also heaped praises on the players and their achievements.
He said `True to the name given to Manipur at the national level as `powerhouse of sports`™, players from Manipur are achieving laurels in Games and Sports at both the national and international levels by winning medals and doing the country proud.`
`We all understand that Manipur has carved a place in the world of sports because of the continued efforts and achievements of sports from the State. And in recognition of the efforts and contribution of our players, we are extending a little cash incentives.`
Expressing that the quantum of incentive is less that provided by other bigger and richer states, he expressed hope that the players understand the financial condition of the State exchequer and to accept the small incentive from the government.
He continued the exceptional improvement shown by the State players has been possible because of the support extended by players, coaches, local clubs, elders and the public.
Meanwhile, on the Laishram Sarita issue, the Chief Minister observed that the whole of Manipur came together and extended full support to her.
`I appreciate the maturity and sportsmanship shown by her on the issue,` he said before adding that the players are valuable jewels and the people will extend fullest support on all higher achievements in the days to come.
There were altogether 57 players from the State in the 516 players contingent of the country for the Incheon Asian Games alongwith five officials. Seven of the 57 brought home medals including two golds.
The entire delegates from the State except for women hockey player Sushila attended today function.
Gold medalists Mary Kom and Hockey players Khadangbam Kothajit and Kangujam Chinglensana received Rs 15 lakh each, bronze medalists Thokchom Chanchan and P Sushila of the women`™s hockey team, Yumnam Sanathoi of Wushu and boxer L Sarita were awarded Rs 8 lakh each while the others including the officials received Rs 2 lakh each.
Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam, and Minister PHED, Labour and Employment and president, MOA I Hemochandra Singh and parliamentary secretary (YAS) M Prithiviraj Singh also attended the felicitation programme.
The felicitation was organised jointly by the Department of Youth Affairs and Sports and the Manipur Olympic Association.