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

Dutee from Odisha had on Sunday sealed the second spot in the women’s 100 meter event at the Asian Games by finishing the race in 11.32 seconds. She missed the gold medal by a mere 0.02 second.

The Chief Minister congratulated Dutee, a hundred-meter sprint national record holder.

“It is a matter of pride that an athlete from Odisha has brought laurels to the country in this event after 20 years. In 1998 Asian Games, Odia Athlete Rachita Panda Mistri had won bronze medal,” said a statement from the Chief Minister’s Office(CMO).

“In recognition of her grit, determination and hard work, the Chief Minister has announced a cash award of Rs 1.5 crore to Dutee Chand,” the statement said.

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, the statement said.

To encourage Athletics, the state had organised the 22nd Asian Athletics Championships in 2017 in partnership with International Association of Athletics Federation and Athletics Federation of India.

Odisha is all set to launch the much awaited high-performance Regional Athletics Academy at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar soon. It is a first of its kind at the state level.