The Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister in a direct interaction with Uttar Pradesh Athletes who will be representing the country in the upcoming Olympic Games in Tokyo, praised their struggle, determination and sustained efforts and also urged every citizen to bolster their enthusiasm. Hailing their spirit as an inspiration amid Covid-19 crisis, the Chief Minister in his one-hour interaction motivated and encouraged them while communicating with each of the ten athletes and their respective guardians. “It is inspiring that despite the pandemic, you all continued your practices. The devotion that you all have towards your game and the perseverance that you all possess is admirable and should also be adopted by the upcoming generations," he said.
CM Yogi started the conversation by speaking with race walker Priyanka Goswami and javelin thrower Annu Rani. Both Priyanka and Annu told the CM about their struggles and how they were preparing for the Tokyo Olympics.
On being informed that Priyanka has been continuing her practices in Bangalore because of absence of a Synthetic Turf Field in UP, CM Yogi Adityanath assured her to equip the state with all required resources and well-trained coaches for promotion of Sports Culture in Uttar Pradesh.
“The talented players of our state have been deprived of adequate resources for long, however, our government is leaving no stone unturned to provide all necessary assets to the sportspersons in order to promote sports activities for them to shine nationally and internationally," he said adding that, “I would urge all you talented athletes to aid the government and Department of Sports to develop the state into a place suitable for all athletes to polish their skills."
The Chief Minister further asked all the athletes to frame their suggestions into a well-detailed proposal for the state government to work accordingly and develop Uttar Pradesh as a ‘Sports Hub’.
In a response to Shooter Mairaj Ahmad Khan who has been in Italy for practices, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath asked him to visit the state in his home-coming after the mega event and inspect the Shooting Range being set up in Lucknow and Varanasi.
“In order to improve sports culture in UP, a review from talented athletes like you all is needed so that the sports infrastructure in the state is equivalent to the international standards," he said.
Furthermore, the Chief Minister said that it is the Prime Minister’s vision of promoting Sports that has been adopted by the state government. The government is working to fulfill the aspirations of the sportspersons and will continue to provide every assistance to the budding athletes.
“Every Village in UP will soon have a sports ground and an open gym which will motivate the youth to stay fit and develop a passion for sports," he added.
The Sports Department, Department of Rural Development, Department of Urban Development, Department of Panchayati Raj and Department of Revenue have been working collectively to foster the sports industry in the state and efforts are also underway to provide special ‘sports kits’ to every budding athlete.
CM Yogi Adityanath also expressed his desire to interact with every athlete and their respective guardians individually after the Tokyo Games in Lucknow.
The Uttar Pradesh government has announced that all athletes from the state who will win a Gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics will be rewarded with a cash prize of Rs 6. The UP government will also reward Rs 4 crore and Rs 2 crore to athletes winning a Silver and a Bronze medal respectively. For sportspersons participating in team events, each player will be rewarded with Rs 3 crore for winning the Gold medal, while Silver and Bronze medallists will be rewarded with Rs 2 and Rs 1 crore each. Apart from this, each athlete participating from UP in the Tokyo Olympics will be rewarded with Rs 10 lakh each. This reward is independent of their performance at the games.
Uttar Pradesh has a representation of a total of 10 players from the Indian contingent travelling to the Tokyo Olympics. The CM interacted with Priyanka Goswami, Annu Rani, Seema Punia, Shivpal Singh, Satish Kumar, Vandana Kataria, Saurabh Chaudhary, Mairaj Ahmad Khan, Lalit Upadhyay and Arvind Singh.
Minister of State Sports and Youth Welfare, Upendra Tiwari, Director of Department of Physical Education and Sports, R P Singh and ACS Information Navneet Sehgal remained present throughout the interaction.