New Delhi/Glasgow: Sports minister Sarbananda Sonowal today assured that Indian athletes, competing at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, will soon be paid their full daily allowance. Sonowal's reaction came in the wake of athletes' claims that they have not been paid their daily allowance which was last week increased to USD 50 from USD 25.
While squash players have not been paid at all, the table tennis squad has got half of their entitlement. "As clarified by the sports secretary (Ajit Sharan), the issue will be sorted out soon. The allowance indeed has been doubled. The ministry has done what it needed to," Sonowal said. "The Indian Olympic Association is handling the affairs in Glasgow.
Part of funds could not be transferred as IOA doesn't have an account there. We have already asked the IOA to do the needful at the earliest. Our athletes has been performing well at the Games and they must get the best of the facilities," added the minister.
Raj Singh, Chef de Mission of the Indian contingent at the 20th Commonwealth Games, also said the country's athletes will be paid their full allowance of USD 50 per day after the funds are released by the sports ministry.
Singh's comments comes after many athletes in the 215-strong contingent claimed they have not been paid their full dues a week into the Glasgow Games.
The allowance earlier was USD 25 per day. "Once the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports released the payment of DA (including enhanced one) the enhanced DA will be transferred directly into their bank account in India. We have received the bank details of the athletes and officials participating in the Games," said Singh.
The table tennis team was paid half of their daily entitlement only on Monday.
"Indian Olymnpic Association has made the payment of Daily Allowances to the athletes/officials of the Indian contingent for CWG 2014 as first instalment (upto 10 days) so far except the squash team as manager of squash team said that they will collect the full DA on 30 July 2014," claimed Singh.
He further said: "The teams who have already left for India has been paid full amount of their DA @USD 25/ per day per person ie shooting, judo, some part of swimming and cycling.
"The procedure for payment in instalment is because if any athletes/officials intend to go early then recovery will be difficult if full payment is made and also the encashment of Travellers cheque can not be in cash in once because the limitation of encashment.
"The financial sanction and the money towards the DA is yet to be received from the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, however, IOA has arranged the payment from its own sources," said Singh.
"The final payment of DA @ USD 25 per day per person will be made on 30 July (today) to all the athletes/ofiicials," he added.