LAHORE-The government’s highly-appreciated initiative of rewarding the medal winners of 13th South Asian Games 2019 continues unabated as the medal-winning judo and karate players were handed over cheques by IPC Minister Dr Fehmida Mirza on Wednesday.

Talking to The Nation, PSB Director Media M Azam Dar said: “In line with approved cash-award policy, gold medalists were given away Rs 1 million each, silver medalists Rs 500,000 each while bronze medalists Rs 250,000 each. Total Rs 6.50 million and Rs 18.25 million were distributed among the judo and karate players respectively.” Pakistan Judo Federation (PJF) Vice President Masood Ahmed and PSB Deputy DG M Azam Dar were present on the occasion.

He added: “Pakistan judo team grabbed 2 gold, 3 silver and 4 bronze medals. The medal—winning team comprising of Hamid Ali (gold & silver in men’s +100kg & mixed team event), Qaiser Khan (2 silvers in men’s 90kg & mixed team event), Karamat Butt (2 silvers in (men’s 81kg & mixed team event), Muhammad Hasnain (bronze & silver in men’s 66kg & mixed team event), Nadeem Akram (silver in mixed team event), Humaira Ashiq (bronze & silver in women’s 48kg & mixed team event), Beenish Khan (bronze & silver in women’s +78kg & mixed team event), Shah Hussain Shah (gold & silver in men’s 100kg & mixed team event), Amina Toyoda (bronze & silver in women’s 57kg & mixed team event) and Asma Rani (silver in mixed team event).

“Similarly, karate playas won 6 gold, 8 silver and 5 bronze medals. Karate winning starts namely Baz Muhammad won silver & gold medals (men’s +84kg & men’s team kumite), Murad Khan won gold & bronze medals (men’s team kumite & men’s -55kg), Zafar Iqbal won silver (men’s -60 kg), Saadi Ghulam Abbas won 2 gold medals (men’s -75kg & men’s team kumite), Naseer Ahmed won gold, silver & bronze medals (men’s team kumite, men’s -67kg & men’s team kata), Rehmatullah won gold (men’s team kumite), Shahbaz Khan won gold (men’s team kumite), Muhammad Awais won 2 gold medals (Men’s -84kg & men’s team kumite).

“Kulsoom won gold & silver medals (women’s team kumite & women’s -68kg), Sana Kousar won gold & silver medals (women’s team kumite & women’s 55kg), Nargis won gold & 2 silvers (women’s team kumite, women’s team kata & women’s +68kg), Sabira Gul won gold & bronze medals (women’s team kumite & women’s 50kg), Noman Ahmed won gold & bronze medals (men’s 50kg & men’s team kata), Shahida won gold & silver (women’s individual kata & women’s team kata), Niamatullah won silver & bronze (men’s individual kata & men’s team kata), Naz Gul won silver & bronze medals (women’s team kata women’s 61kg ) and Iqra Anwar won bronze medal (women’s 45kg),” Dar added.

Speaking on the occasion, IPC Minister Dr Fehmida Mirza felicitated the medal winners and alos valued the parents of the players, who encouraged them to take part in the Games for bringing laurels for the country. She especially lauded women players, who despite limited resources and societal pressure, won the medals for the country. She advised the players to continue their struggle, keep them fit through regular practice and also train youth of their locality.

Sharing his views, Masood Ahmed thanked the IPC Minister, saying this is for the first time that the players are receiving their reward in form of cash prize well in time, which would definitely boost the players’ morale, help their families and also facilitate them for future endeavors.

The medal-winning players also thanked the government and IPC Minister Dr Fehmida Mirza for these timely cash awards and hoped that the government will continue to support and encourage the players, who in return will win more medals and glories for the country at international level.