Bhubaneshwar, July 17: The Odisha government revealed that it has provided financial assistance of Rs 4.09 crore to Dutee Chand since 2015 but the ace sprinter said that "this Rs 4 crore does not show the correct picture". The Odisha government statement comes as the sprinter announced on Facebook saying that she has put her BMW car on sale to fund her training.
"The total financial support provided to Dutee Chand from State government/OMC is Rs 4.09 crore (after 2015). Rs 3 crore as a financial incentive for medals won at Asian Games 2018; Rs 30 lakh for training and financial support during 2015-19; Rs 50 lakh for training support for Tokyo Olympics released in two installments," the statement from the Odisha government said.
"She is currently drawing a gross salary of Rs 84,604 (June 2020 Salary) per month. She is not required to come to the office so that she is able to concentrate full-time on training… Accordingly, since her appointment in OMC, no official word has been allotted to Chand," the statement added.
Asking upon the claims, Dutee, said, "I am indebted to the Odisha government for supporting me all these years, but this Rs 4 crore does not show the correct picture. Everybody will start thinking that Dutee has spent so much money. The Rs 3 crore is the prize money the Odisha government had given me for winning two silver medals in 2018 Asian Games. It is just like what a P V Sindhu or any other medal winner gets from the state governments like Haryana or Punjab. It should not be considered as financial assistance for training.”
The Odisha government also said it had appointed Dutee as a Group-A level officer in Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) which “provided Rs 29 lakh support for her training and financial incentives”. However, Dutee also denied such a claim made by the government, saying the amount included her salary. "This Rs 29 lakh is inclusive of my salary and I don’t know how it is for training support. I am an employee (of OMC) and I have to get my salary. I have to find out."
She said she is no longer selling her car as the KIIT founder and Member of Parliament Achyuta Samanta has assured her financial support for her training. "I have been offered financial support by even Union Finance Minister (Nirmala Sitharaman) and sports minister (Kiren Rijiju). They called me a few days back but I have politely told them I will approach them when it is needed."
Earlier, Dutee posted on social media that she intended to sell her BMW. The post was later deleted but a controversy broke out since then. "I took to social media to sell my car BMW. I don’t have the resources to maintain luxury cars, though I love them. I am not able to use the car and it is a spendthrift expense on my part. I never expressed that I am selling it to fund my training," Dutee had said.