Raipur: Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh on Monday said that the state government will develop a 'Khelgaon' (sports village) in Bilaspur district and set up a state-level sports authority.
"The sports talent will be supported, nurtured and groomed to excel on the world stage like the Olympics, Commonwealth Games and Asiad," Singh said, speaking at a state sport awards distribution ceremony at Raipur.
He felicitated as many as 103 sportspersons and coaches.
Rajnandgaon-based hockey player Renuka Yadav (22) who was a part of 16-member Indian women's hockey squad for Rio Olympics was also felicitated with a special award of Rs 10 lakh.
The sports training centre at Bilaspur will be developed as a Khelgaon and a state level sports authority will be constituted for Chhattisgarh, the Chief Minister said.
A pension scheme for the sports-persons who are above 60 years old and who have taken part in Olympics, Commonwealth Games or Asiad will be launched, he said.
Also, an accident insurance scheme will be started for the players, he added.
An action plan to nurture the sports talent for the next ten years will be drafted, he said.
"The young talent between the age group of 8 to 12 years will be identified at district, division and state level and will be provided training in various sports. The players will be selected for individual games like athletics, swimming, archery...those players (in the age group 12-16 yrs) whose performance is on par with national level players will be directly selected for the training," the CM said.
The sports-persons working in the police force and other government departments would be sent to the national level academies for training. Those who win medals at the national level too will be sent for training at national academies at the cost of the government, the CM added.
Singh also announced a class-II job for Renuka Yadav in the state sports department after she passes std 12th.
Laxmirani Manjhi, who was part of Indian archery team at the Rio Olympics, was also felicitated.