Air India rewards Indian junior Hockey team's coach and striker inadequately; blame it on poor financial situation
India’s premier airline carrier Air India recently announced cash awards for two of its employees associated with Junior World Cup winning hockey team, namely Harendra Singh who is the head coach and striker Armaan Qureshi. This, however, was deemed by many as not sufficient an amount to be awarded to the champions considering the airlines’ past awards and their motive to inspire sportspersons associated with them.
Ashwani Lohani, who is the chairman and managing director of Air India, clarified that the company is not doing well financially at the moment and this is the reason they are not able to award the winners handsomely. He also said that the company is committed to its objective of supporting the players and will strive hard to improve their financial situation.
“I would have liked to reward them more if not for our current position. But we pledge to work as a family and get Air India back on track,” Lohani was seen quoting by Hindustan Times during the felicitation ceremony.
Coach Harendra Singh was awarded Rs 25,000 while Armaan was awarded Rs 10,000 at a special event held in Delhi for their outstanding performance in the recently concluded Hockey junior world cup.
“I would like to congratulate both Harendra and Armaan for what they have achieved. It is a matter of pride for the Air India family. I would like to announce a small cash award of Rs 25,000 for Harendra and Rs 10,000 for Armaan from Air India’s behalf,” he added.
Harendra Singh is associated with the airline as the senior manager whereas Armaan is a contractual employee who also plays for them in the domestic arena.
There were also speculations with regards to the improvement in the job status of both the members of the World Cup-winning team. These, however, were shunned as it was revealed that this is a policy decision which cannot be taken instantly.
“We have a policy to promote sports but we have to look at the matter. But definitely the matter will be under our active consideration,” the CMD said.
The Indian team put up a splendid show to defeat Belgium by 2-1 in the finals to clinch the title after a long gap of 15 years.
The third-largest national career in India also awarded cricketer Jayant Yadav, whose father is a regular employee of the airlines, for his exceptional performance in the recently concluded Test series against England.