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Sports ministry offers financial help to former athletes


New Delhi: The sports ministry Tuesday extended financial assistance to former footballer M. Bharathan and physically challenged sportsperson Prabir Sarkar.

Bharathan will get Rs.100,000 and Sarkar Rs.150,00 from the National Welfare Fund for Sportspersons as ex-gratia assistance.

Bharathan had represented India in Merdeka Cup while Sarkar has also won several medals at the international stage, said a statement from the sports ministry.

“The ministry came to know from news reports that Bharathan is running a kiosk for his livelihood. Taking into consideration his financial position, sports minister M.S. Gill sanctioned ex-gratia payment of Rs.One lakh to Bharathan,” the ministry said.

“Sarkar had lost his left leg in a rail accident when he was four years old. Despite being physically challenged, he won many medals in sports competitions for the disabled at national and international levels. He had secured 1st position in 100 metres in 8th and 9th National Games for the Disabled held in 2006 and 2007 and he got silver medal in long jump in 8th FESPIC Games held in Busan (South Korea) in 2002,” the statement added.

Sarkar had requested the minster for financial help for procurement of an artificial limb.

“He has informed the ministry that the cost of artificial limb will be about Rs.4.5 lakh and he has arranged Rs.3 lakh. Considering his request, the ministry has sanctioned Rs.1.5 lakh for procurement of artificial limb,” the ministry said.