A day after World Champion Malika Handa slammed the Punjab government for denying her cash rewards and a job opportunity citing 'no policy' for impaired sportspersons, Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa said an exception should be made for her on humanitarian ground.
"Even if there's no policy (specially-abled sportsperson) then an exception should be made and action should be taken on Humanitarian Ground," Randhawa told reporters when asked about the demands of seven-time national chess champion. The Minister said he is willing to make some adjustments to reward Malika Handa for her achievements.
The 26-year-old Chess player had claimed that she was denied her cash reward despite repeated assurance by Chief Minister Charanjit Channi and Sports Minister Pargat Singh. After months of requests and meetings, Malika Handa took to Twitter to express her frustration with the Punjab government.
She wrote, "I am feeling very hurt. I met Punjab Sports Minister Pargat Singh on December 31 and he told me that the government cannot provide me a job or cash reward because there is no policy for deaf sports. Then why did they make such an announcement? I wasted 5 years on the Congress government. They fooled me. They do not care about deaf sports."
I am very feeling Hurt— Malika Handa🇮🇳🥇 (@MalikaHanda) January 2, 2022
31 dec I met sports minister of Punjab @PargatSOfficial
Now He said punjab Govt can not give job and Not cash award accept to (Deaf sports) because they do not have policy for deaf sports.
Cc: @CHARANJITCHANNI @sherryontopp @RahulGandhi @rhythmjit @ANI pic.twitter.com/HhYEWbGJ7E
Narrating her ordeal, the national player's mother Renu Handa told Republic, "Malika is so disappointed with the government that she no longer feels that she should continue playing chess."
"When a child, though disabled, makes every effort to win national and international laurels for the country, why is she treated in this manner? Why is she called Chandigarh and then turned down saying we have no policy for a deaf sportsperson? Such behaviour is depressing," Malika's mother added.
Handa has won the national championship seven times and also has six medals at the Asian and World Championships.