What's the story?
Kiren Rijiju, Sports Minister, in a written statement to the Rajya Sabha said that athletes under the 'Pension to Meritorious Sportspersons' scheme are getting a lifelong pension.
There is a strict eligibility criteria for obtaining the pension under the scheme. Only those Indian sportspersons who win medals at paralympic events or international sporting events will be eligible for the sceme - either upon retirment or after attaining 30 years of age, whichever comes later.
Kiren Rijiju became India's Minister of State for Youth Affairs in May 2019. He has been instrumental in the swift implementation of various goverment schemes.
The heart of the matter
While addressing the Rajya Sabha, the Sports Minister revealed that there are already over 627 sportspersons getting their monthly pensions under the 'Pension to Meritorious Sportspersons' scheme.
It was also stated in the official statement that the pensions being received by the sportspersons are in the range of INR 12,000 to INR 20,000. The Indian sportspersons who are medal winners at the Asian Games, Commonwealth Games, World Cups, Olympic Games, or the World Championships are being disbursed the allocated pensions under the scheme.
Kiren Rijiju also remarked that the former sportspersons who were struggling presently will be aided by the Sports Ministry.
The statement further added that: "This Ministry is also implementing the 'Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay National Welfare Fund for Sportspersons' (PDUNWFS), which caters to sportspersons of yesteryears now living in indigent conditions and for medical treatment of sportspersons."
In the written reply to the Upper House, the Union Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports also mentioned that the scheme is equally applicable to physically impacted and disabled sportspersons.
The Sports Ministry has taken a great step to aid the yesteryear sportspersons. The scheme comes as a boon for the former Indian stars who have brought glory to India. The 'Pension to Meritorious Sportspersons' does not differentiate between the disabled athletes or physically impacted athletes which is a great aspect.
Various other eligible sportspersons, who were earlier unaware of the scheme, can now apply for the lifelong pension and become the beneficiaries.Published 11 Feb 2020, 13:52 IST