Sports and Youth Affairs Minister Jahangir Khanzada has said that cash prizes of Rs75,000, Rs50,000 and Rs40,000 will be given to all special children of Pakistan winning medals in World Winter Games Austria 2017 on behalf of Punjab government.
He said that Rs75,000 will be given to special athletes winning a gold medal from all the four provinces, Rs50,000 will be given to those obtaining a silver medal and Rs40,000 to those scoring a bronze. He said that revolutionary steps will be taken for the promotion of sports among disabled children and they will be provided playgrounds and coaching facilities according to their physical and mental needs.
He made this announcement while addressing a luncheon hosted in the honour of special athletes of Punjab Sports Board winning from Austria. The minister congratulated these athletes and said that they have won laurels for the country and the nation by utilising their capabilities. He said that Chief Minister’s Talent Hunt Programme will introduce a new tradition of promotion of sports as a result of which, girl and boy students of schools and colleges will be provided an opportunity for making their identity, and special children will not be neglected in this regard.
Talking to the media, Jahangir Khanzada said that 3,000 special players of 107 countries from all over the world participated in Special Olympics, which also include 12 Pakistani players who won three gold medals, seven silver medals and six bronze medals for Pakistan. The players included Mehwish, Abdullah and Farah.
Punjab Sports Director General Zulfiqar Ahmed Ghumman told the media that Punjab chief minister is paying attention to the promotion of sports on the pattern of education and health. He said that grounds with floodlights are being prepared in schools and colleges under the supervision of Punjab Sports Board. He said that ten pitches, swimming pools and ‘akhara’ are also being prepared over seven-acre land in Iqbal Park Sports Complex.
At the end of the ceremony, the minister gave a cheque of Rs75,000 to Farah Ehsaan obtaining the gold medal, Rs50,000 to Muhammad Abdullah on winning a silver medal, and Rs40,000 to Mehwish Tufail on securing the bronze medal. He also presented souvenirs to Pakistan Special Olympics Association Vice Chairman Anees-ur-Rehman, Coaches Irfan, Zahid Nawaz and Rubab.
Sports Director Muhammad Anees Sheikh, Pakistan Special Olympics Association Vice Chairman Anees-ur-Rehman, Chief Minister House Special Monitoring Unit Head Syeda Fatima Zaidi and Rai Mustafa were also present on the occasion.
Anees-ur-Rehman thanked Punjab chief minister on the encouragement of special players, saying that Punjab government had also provided financial assistance to players before going to Austria and has won their hearts by giving them prizes after their victories. Syeda Fatima Zaidi appreciated the steps of Punjab government for promoting sports.