Visually impaired champ moves court as govt fails to pay full reward | India News

AHMEDABAD: The Gujarat high court has sought a response from the state govt after a visually impaired chess champion filed a petition alleging that he was not awarded the Rs 3crore cash reward he was entitled to for winning two gold medals in an international championship.
Darpan Inani (25) from Vadodara approached the court seeking directions to the Sports Authority of Gujarat and state govt to release the cash reward in accordance with the 2022 sports policy for players winning in international and national tournaments.
Advocate Keyur Gandhi informed the court that Inani participated in the Para Asian Games in China in 2023 and secured two gold medals – one individual and one team – for India in Rapid Chess. While he is entitled to a Rs 3crore reward, he has only been paid Rs 40lakh. In contrast, one of his team members from Odisha, Soundarya Kumar Pradhan, received Rs 1.50crore from the Odisha government following the Indian team’s victory.
Gandhi argued that the authorities have misinterpreted the policy regarding cash rewards for players in the handicap category. Inani falls within the category eligible for cash rewards by participating and winning in a tournament organized by the World Chess Federation. Justice VD Nanavati, while hearing the case, commended his accomplishments, stating, “it is commendable.”
When the lawyer raised concerns about the denial of prize money, the judge remarked, “Even otherwise, encouragement is needed for such players.” After the preliminary hearing, the High Court issued a notice to the government and scheduled further proceedings for April 26.

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