Thanks but no thanks: Olympians find Rajasthan pension scheme for players ludicrous

Jaipur: The Rajasthan government has introduced a pension scheme for international players and players of “special category”.

Sportspersons who are 60 or older will be entitled for the pension. Those eligible include players who have participated or won medals in Olympics, World Cup Tournaments and World Championships, winners in Asian Games and championships and Commonwealth Games and championships, South Asian Games, Grand Slams, All England Badminton and Thomas and Uber Cups. Pension will also be given to Dronacharya and Guru Vashishtha awardees and international cricketers. But the government had laid down such eligibility conditions that hardly any international player would be able to fulfil them

Rs 3 lakh income cap

The pension amount will be between Rs 6,000 and Rs 10,000 per month. Rs 10,000 will be paid to Olympics medal winners and Rs 9,000 to Olympics participants; Rs 8,000 to world championship and World Cup medal winners and Rs 7,000 to participants and Rs 6,000 for Asian Games and Commonwealth Games medal winners. Arjuna and Dronacharya awardees will get Rs 7,000 per month while Maharana Pratap and Guru Vashishtha awardees will get Rs 6,000.

Players will have to give an undertaking

Players will have to submit an affidavit on a Rs 100 non-judicial stamp paper that they are neither employed in any government department nor getting pension from any other source. They must also say that their annual income from all sources is not more than Rs 3 lakhs. Moreover, the player should be a native of Rajasthan. A committee will be formed to examine the applications received.

These are the main conditions

  1. Players are not receiving pension from any other source.
  2. Annual income from all sources is not more than Rs 3 lakh.
  3. The player will be entitled to a pension for only one sport.

Olympians’ take

How can there be an international medal winner who is not earning more than Rs 3 lakh after retirement? The government’s intentions are suspect

-Gopal Saini, Olympian, 1980

An international medal winner will not starve himself. He will find work somewhere and will receive pension after retirement. These conditions are completely wrong.

-Shri Ram Singh, Olympian, 1972, 1976, 1980