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March 31, 2020

Ministry forms fund for virus-hit sportspersons

Sports

March 31, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Inter-Provincial Coordination (IPC) has constituted a fund for those sportspersons who get affected (physically not financially) from COVID-19 in the country.

Talking to ‘The News’ on Monday, IPC secretary Mohammad Ali Shahzada confirmed that the sportspersons who get infected by virus will be covered by the fund. “Yes, we have constituted a fund for sportspersons who get infected by the virus in any way. Almighty Allah saves all but if any sportsperson get infected, he will be provided fund,” he said following the meeting chaired by IPC Minister Dr Fehmida Mirza. When questioned whether the government has any plans to cover athletes financially as they were left struggling by the virus, he said that issue was also under consideration.

“We are also considering that aspect and have discussed that in the meeting. However, for the time being we have decided to cover all national athletes physically,” he said. ‘The News’ has learnt from well-placed sources that around Rs 70 to 80 million pending with the government under the head of giving cash incentives to medal winners in international events was also considered during the meeting.

Only a few days back, Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) President Salim Saifullah Khan floated the idea of constituting a fund for the deserving athletes in the wake of coronavirus outbreak. However, the government has fallen short of constituting that fund but has announced covering COVID-19 hit athletes.

Meanwhile, after the meeting the minister directed the medical and rehabilitation staff of PSB to be available to help out the coronavirus infected spo­r­t­s­persons. She also directed to upload videos on social media, facebook, twitter and tele-services related to prevention against coronavirus and other health issues pertaining to sportspersons.

All type of sports activities have been brought to standstill. “The ministry and PSB are committed towards playing role in this critical situation. Sportspersons should adhere to the guidelines issued by the government. They should observe social distancing, washing hands, improve immune system etc. Keep doing exercise at home. It would keep these athletes fit and ready for international events at resumption of activities.”