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The Sports Authority of India’s Mission Olympic Cell has approved financial proposals amounting to Rs. 57 lakhs for elite athletes enrolled in the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) in five sports, including, athletics, table tennis, wrestling, para-athletics and shooting. This was decided in a meeting held on Monday and chaired by DG, SAI, Neelam Kapur. The proposals approved were as follows:
1. Athletics:The committee has approved a year-long training programme for middle-distance runner Jinson Johnson in USA under coach Scott Simons. The training will be till the Tokyo Olympics. The committee also sanctioned the reimbursement of fees for discus thrower Seema Punia’s coach and fitness trainer for the support provided during the time of the Asian Games in 2018, along with the cost of medical treatment incurred by Punia, earlier this year. Purchase of recovery equipment for triple jumper Arpinder Singh was also sanctioned by the committee.
2. Table Tennis:The committee has approved the participation of players Sathiyan Gnanasekaran and Manika Batra in ITTF Bulgarian Open (August 13-18, 2019). It has also approved Sathiyan’s proposal to pay the cost of travel of his fitness trainer for one week at the Czech Open (August 20-25, 2019).
3. Wrestling:The committee has approved international trainings for Greco-Roman wrestler Sajan in Armenia and Belarus as well as participation in two wrestling tournaments in Belarus (July 26-28, 2019) and Georgia (August 6-17, 2019).
4. Para-Athletics:The committee has sanctioned participation of para-javelin thrower Sandeep Chaudhary and Sumit Antil in an international competition in Paris (August 29-30, 2019). Also their proposal to purchase sports kit and equipment has been approved.
5. Shooting:The committee has sanctioned the coaching, equipment and tournament participation proposals of shooters Anjum Moudgil, Mehuli Ghosh, Manu Bhaker, Deepak Kumar and Rahi Sarnobat. (The Target Olympic Podium Scheme is a flagship program of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports which is a scheme to provide assistance to India’s top athletes.)