Odisha’s Athletes Felicitated with Cash Awards for Medal Triumphs at Khelo India Youth Games 2023
~ 92 athletes received a total cash award of Rs 63,75,000 ~
Bhubaneswar, 10 February 2024: In yet another significant development for the sports ecosystem in the state, Hon’ble Sports Minister Shri Tusharkanti Behera felicitated athletes from Odisha at the Kalinga Sports Complex for their exceptional performance at the recently concluded Khelo India Youth Games 2023. As many as 92 athletes received a total cash award of Rs 63,75,000 for efforts in Odisha’s medal haul that comprised six gold medals, seven silver medals and eight bronze medals. Also present at the event were President of Hockey India & Chairman of the Hockey Promotion Council of Odisha, Shri Dilip Tirkey, Sports Director, Shri Siddhartha Das along with other officials of the sports department.
Speaking at the occasion, Hon’ble Sports Minster Shri Tusharkanti Behera said, “The development of youth through sports is very important to us so it is always a matter of pride for us to see our young athletes win medals for Odisha. Congratulations to all the medalists, Odisha stands behind you as you continue your journey of athletic excellence.”
In keeping with their unwavering commitment to incentivize athletic performances, the Government of Odisha allocated cash prizes of Rs 1,00,000 for gold medals, Rs 75,000 for silver medals and Rs 50,000 for bronze medals to the athletes.
In Athletics, Mohammad Reyan Basha received recognition for his gold medal in the 100 Mtr. Run and his silver medal in the Medley Relay. Similarly, Ommkar Prasad Nanda was acknowledged for his two gold medals in Hammer Throw and Shotput. Pratik Maharana, Astik Pradhan, and Rajendra Sidhu, who contributed to the silver medal triumph in the Medley Relay, were also honored, alongside Sunita Santra, who secured bronze in the 200 Mtr. Steeple Chase.
The Weightlifting contingent from Odisha showed remarkable success, securing six medals. Gold medalists Jyoshna Sabar and Sadananda Bariha were honored for their exceptional performances. Additionally, Priteesmita Bhoi, Mina Santa, Hrudananda Das (silver medalist), and Deepak Kumar Pradhan (bronze medalist) were also recognized for their achievements.
The Gymnasts felicitated included Tannu and Alok Kumar, who received recognition for their silver and bronze medals, respectively. In addition, the duo Pragati Parida and Vishaka Toppo, who secured a silver medal in Women’s Doubles in Badminton, were duly awarded. Among other individual medal winners who were felicitated were Ssakshat Patra and Debasish Sahoo, each winning a bronze medal in Cycling and Tennis, respectively.
In team sports, Odisha clinched the coveted gold in Men’s Hockey. Each member of the 18-member squad received Rs 1,00,000. Similarly, the Women’s Hockey Team was awarded Rs 50,000 each for their bronze medal. The 15-member Women’s Kho-kho team received Rs 75,000 each for their silver medal, while the Men’s Football Team received Rs 50,000 each for securing bronze.
Notably, Odisha participated in 12 disciplines at the Khelo India Youth Games 2023 and registered at least a medal in every discipline except Swimming, Judo and Mallakhamb.