What's the story?
In what comes as a major boost for Olympic-bound athletes, the Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) of Sports Authority of India (SAI) has cleared funds of ₹1.3 crores for their training under the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS).
TOPS is the flagship programme of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (MYAS). Its objective is to aid India's top athletes and assist them in all possible ways so that their chances of winning medals at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and the future editions of the quadrennial extravaganza can be increased.
The scheme that was established in September 2014 aims to keep a keen eye on all of India's future medal prospects. Sports such as Archery, Badminton, Boxing, Hockey, Shooting and Wrestling have been included as the ‘High-Priority’ sports with significant emphasis on them.
The heart of the matter
The 47th Agenda meeting of the Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) was recently held with SAI's Director-General analysing the performances of the top athletes and also reviewing the proposals various TOPS athletes had sent regarging financial assistance.
As per PTI, SAI said in a statement:
"They met earlier today for the 47th Agenda meeting where the committee discussed the performance of athletes under the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) and reviewed the financial proposals of TOPS athletes in various sports."
Sportskeeda learns that ₹1.3 crores were cleared after due consideration of the financial proposals. Following are the beneficiaries according to the respective sports:
Para Archery: Rakesh Kumar, Harvinder Singh, Shyam Sundar, and Vivek Chikara's request for new equipment was cleared. Vivek Chikara had further requested for a new prosthesis and that too was cleared by the MOC.
Swimming: Swimming equipment, financial assistance for the club, coach, other fee payments had been requested by ace Swimmer Srihari Nataraj and that was cleared.
Para-Badminton: Funds were also cleared to help para-badminton players Suhas Yathiraj, Pramod Bhagat, Krishna Nagar, Sukant Kadam, Manoj Sarkar, and Tarun for their participation at an international event in Spain.
Para-Javelin: Ajeet Singh, a Para-javelin thrower, had requested for a customised below elbow prosthesis and it was approved.
Athletics: Rohit Yadav and Shivpal Singh's request for equipment was approved
Furthermore, recurve archer Atul Verma was moved to the TOPS development group from their core group. After a critical analysis of their performances and current form, wrestlers Utkarsh Kale and Sandeep Tomar were dropped from the TOPS scheme.
TOPS continues to be a boon for all the athletes under it and hopefully will see Indian athletes clinch medals at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.Published 14 Feb 2020, 19:36 IST