Odisha Chief Minister honours sports persons with Biju Patnaik Awards

Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today conferred Weightlifter Jhili Dalabehera and Shooter Shriyanka Sadangi with Biju Patnaik Sports Award, on the occasion of National Sports Day.

Moreover, cash award of Rs 75 lakh was given to Commonwealth Games 2022 Silver medal winner Amit Rohidas and Rs 50 lakh to Bronze medal winner Deep Grace Ekka.

According Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) sources, the awards were given for outstanding performance in Sports and Games at a ceremony held at Convention Centre in Lok Seva Bhawan of Bhubaneswar. A total cash award of Rs 2,12,82,500 was presented to different sports persons.

Jatani MLA Suresh Routray received an award from the Chief Minister on behalf of his son Siddhartha Routray, who recently scaled the Mount Everest. Siddhartha was given cash reward of Rs 3 lakh.

Fourteen-year-old Pratap Tarei and 10-year-old Subhashree Rout were conferred with the Biju Patnaik Bravery Award for their humanity and selfless act of courage and bravery. Each of them received Rs 1 lakh along with a citation and a Silver medal from the Chief Minister.

Coach Bishnu Mishra was conferred with the Biju Patnaik Sports Award for Excellence in Coaching. He received Rs 1 lakh, a citation and a trophy.

The Biju Patnaik Award for Excellence in Sports Journalism was conferred to Benudhar Das. He received Rs 50,000 including a citation and a trophy.

Biju Patnaik Award for Lifetime Achievement in Promotion of Sports and Games was given to former Odia International cricketer, Debasis Mohanty. He was awarded Rs 3 lakh, a citation and a trophy.

Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP) of Sundargarh district bagged the Biju Patnaik Sports award for Best Contribution to Sports and Games. Atanu Bhowmick, Director, RSP, received Rs 1 lakh, a citation and a trophy on behalf of the organisation.

On this occasion of National Sports Day celebration, about 53 meritorious sportspersons and para-sportspersons of Odisha received appointment orders for their outstanding performance in various sports disciplines and bringing laurels for the State and nation as well.

Body builder Chandan Kumar Sahu, para-athlete Jayanti Behera, Badminton player, Rutuparna Panda, para badminton athlete Sunil Pradhan, Rugby player, Muna Murmu, Hockey players Jiwan Kishori Toppo and Janhabi Pradhan received their appointment orders from Sports Minister Tusharkanti Behera in presence of the Chief Minister.

Besides, 291 sportspersons were felicitated with cash awards today, for their spectacular performance at the national and international level. Those include Dutee Chand and Srabani Nanda for participation in CWG 2022, Padmini Rout for participation in FIDE Chess Olympiad, Dinesh Kumar for participation in CWG 2022, who received Rs 7.5 lakh each from the Sports Minister Behera.

Similarly, Chess player Saina Salonika received Rs 1.5 lakh, Football player Tankadhar Bag received Rs 2 lakh, Blind Chess player Soundarya Pradhan received Rs 2 lakh, Wheelchair fencers, V Ramesh Rao and Rakhal Sethy received Rs 2 lakh each and Malati Panure received Rs 3 lakh from the Sports Minister for their rare achievements in different international platforms.

Congratulating all, Chief Minister Patnaik, said, “It is a proud moment for us to honour you all. I am sure the achievements of the sports persons being felicitated today, will motivate more youth to take up sports as a career. Sports is an important medium towards the development of our youth and society. We are investing in sports across the State and supporting the sportspersons in their endeavours to achieve excellence.”

Odisha is being recognised as an emerging sports destination of the country. The government will continue to support the sports activities and make Odisha a major force in the sports field in the coming years, Patnaik added.

The awardees expressed their gratitude and delight for the support they have been extended by the Government and thanked the Chief Minister in his continuous support for Sports in Odisha.

Chairman of Hockey Promotion Council Dilip Tirkey, Chief Secretary Suresh Mahapatra, Development Commissioner-cum-Additional Chief Secretary PK Jena, Secretary to Chief Minister VK Pandian, Commissioner-cum-Secretary R Vineel Krishna and several other senior officials including staff, coaches and athletes of Sports and Youth Services Department attended the function.

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