Manipur CM hails Sarita for sportsmanship

Imphal The Manipur government has felicitated boxer M.C. Mary Kom and other six medal winners and participants of the Incheon Asian Games at a grand reception here on Saturday.

Sarita Devi
Sarita Devi 

In the felicitation programme at the indoor stadium of Khuman Lampak Sports Complex, three gold medal winners, including five times world champion Mary Kom, received Rs 15 lakh each while four bronze medal winners received Rs 8 lakh each.

The other participants received Rs 2 lakh each. Governor KK Paul and Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh distributed the cash awards to the sportspersons.

Okram Ibobi Singh, who also holds the sports portfolio, termed the players as "jewels of Manipur" and said his government was keen to give more cash incentives to the medal winners but the financial condition of the state did not permit him to be more liberal.

Referring to the incident where Sarita Devi lost her semi-final bout to a South Korean opponent, Singh said: "The people of Manipur extended full support to her.

I appreciate the maturity and sportsmanship shown by Sarita." Sarita had protested the judge's decision to name the Korean as winner and accused the judges of bias. However, later she regretted this act.

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