Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government on Thursday issued a statement detailing the financial support it had provided ace athlete Dutee Chand over the last five years.
According to the state government’s Sports and Youth Services department, a total amount of Rs 4.09 crore has been given to Dutee since 2015.
Last week, Dutee had put up a post on Facebook – which she subsequently deleted — asking potential buyers to get in touch with her manager as she was forced to sell her BMW to raise funds for Tokyo Olympics training.
“No sponsor is willing to spend on me due to this pandemic. I am in need of money and so have decided to sell it off to meet my training and diet expense,” she had told Odisha Bytes on July 10.
On Wednesday, though, Dutee made a U-turn and clarified that she isn’t selling her car to raise funds for training.
“Rs 3 crore as financial incentive for medals won at Asian Games 2018. Rs 30 Lakhs for training and financial support during 2015-19. Rs 50 Lakhs for training support for Tokyo Olympics (released In two instalments on 02/08/2019 and 27/12/2019),” mentioned the state government statement.
“The State government appointed Dutee Chand as Group-A level officer in Odisha Mining Corporation (A Gold Category PSU). She is currently drawing gross salary of Rs 84,604 (June 2020 salary) per month. She is not required to come to office so that she is able to concentrate full-time on training. Accordingly, since her appointment in OMC, no official work has been allotted her. OMC provided Rs 29 Lakhs for training and financial incentives,” the statement added.
Dutee, realizing that she had rubbed the state government the wrong way, said that she sold her sedan to get some ‘breathing space’ and not burden Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT) or the Odisha Government.
“I took to social media to sell my car. I don’t have the resources to maintain luxury cars, though I love them. I never expressed that I am selling it to fund my training,” Dutee claimed in a statement on her Twitter handle.
“Odisha Government and my own KIIT University have always supported me. This does not deny the fact that my training is very expensive, especially for the 2021 Olympics.
“I just wanted to make a point that this money could be diverted for my training and a car can be bought post-COVID once I receive the money from the State Government.
“With folded hands, I want to say that I was neither complaining nor making a show of my lack of finance because I am a daughter of the country and my well-wishers are there to keep me going. Bless me for my training at Kalinga Stadium so that my dream of getting a Gold for my country comes true,” wrote the 24-year-old.