Akhilesh bonanza for school games: Nano cars for top athletes, cycles for all
Middle-distance runner Anjana Thamke from Nashik, who got three golds in the under-17 category, was among the lucky ones. Her coach Vijender gave her a ride around the track. “I will now have to teach her driving also,” he quipped.
The other winners included Apurva Ghagre (Maharashtra), Chitra P U (Kerala) and Dutee Chand (Orissa). Besides, each of the 2,600-odd athletes who participated in the event, held from January 29-February 2, was awarded a voucher that can be exchanged for a bicycle.
SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav also announced a cash reward of Rs 21,000 for the star performers, including Kerala’s long-distance runner Chitra P U, who won four golds in the under-19 section. The daughter of daily wagers, the 17-year-old said: “My parents were unable to raise funds for my sister’s wedding. This will help them. Besides, we are now a family that has a car.”
“There isn’t any athlete in the country who doesn’t use a bicycle as a means to keep fit, and reach his/ her destination also,” said Akhilesh. “It’s the most important means of transport for them. That’s why my father decided to give bicycles,” he added. Incidentally, the bicycle is also the SP’s poll symbol.
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