Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced a cash award of Rs 1.5 crore to Dutee Chand on winning the silver medal in 100-meter event at 18th Asian Games in Indonesia.

It is a matter of pride that an athlete from Odisha has brought laurels to the country in 100 metre event after 20 years. In 1998 Asian Games, Odia athlete Rachita Panda Mistri had won a bronze.

The State has a special focus on athletics considering the performance of its athletes in recent times and the huge potential among the talented youth.

To encourage athletics, the State had organised successfully the Asian Athletics Championship in 2017 in partnership with International Association of Athletics Federation.

“The Athletics Federation of India, Odisha, has planned a high performance Athletics Academy which is expected to be launched shortly,” said the Chief Minister.

The academy will be the first of its kind at the State level.

Currently, the fastest man and woman in the country are from Odisha.