Indian Olympic Association (IOA) President Narinder Batra appealed to the sports ministry to provide grants to sports bodies in the country that comes under its purview. In a letter to Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju, Batra said that the appeal is being made after there was no mention of sports in the five addresses made by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman detailing the mega Rs 20 lakh-crore economic package under the Centre’s ‘Self-Reliant India Movement.’
In the letter, Batra appealed to Rijiju to ask the central government to provide sports bodies i.e., the IOA, the National Sports Federations (NSF) and State Olympic Associations (SOA), financial support via a one-time grant.
“We have been watching all the 5 announcements by Hon’ble Union Finance Minister including the one made on 17th May, 2020 and Sports as understood by us seems to have found no mention,” said Batra in his letter.
“Request for urgent & kind intervention of The Hon’ble Union Sports Minister for support/one time grant to Sports Bodies in India.
“After the Pandemic when restrictions are lifted, we then will have to restart and rebuild all over once again.
“There are many conditions which will now be attached with running of daily affairs and they will require money/cash to implement.”
Batra also provided a breakdown of the funds required by the different sports bodies. Rs 10 crore has been alloted for the IOA itself after Rs 5 crore each to NSFs of Olympic sports. Rs 2.5 crore each to NSFs of non-Olympic sports and Rs 1 crore each to SOAs.
“Due to the ongoing pandemic and lockdown, we the sports bodies are unlikely to get any sponsorship and hence we may find it very difficult to restart our activities effectively,” said Batra.
“We do not see sponsors coming forward till/and after the Olympics in 2021 to assist us and hence we will require hand holding by the Union Government.
“We will have no objection for providing with the funds utilization certificates, duly Certified & Verified by C&AG approved Auditor/s.”