Itanagar, Sep 27 (IANS): Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Wednesday said three Wushu players from the state, who missed the opportunity to participate in the ongoing Asian Games at Hangzhou in China, due to denial of visas by the host country, would be treated as participants of the event as members of the Indian Wushu team and provided with incentives as per the state's sports policy.
Three Wushu players -- Onilu Tega, Nyeman Wangsu and Mepung Lamgu along with Sports and Youth Affairs Minister Mama Natung, their coach Maibam Premchandra Singh, met the Chief Minister on Wednesday.
Acknowledging the fact that the three athletes were the first ones from Arunachal Pradesh ever to qualify for the Asian Games but had to miss the prestigious event for no fault of theirs, Khandu said that they would receive the cash incentive of Rs 20 lakh each in accordance with the state's sports policy for an athlete participating in the Asian Games.
He also said that coach Maibam Premchandra Singh would also receive his share of 10 per cent of the incentives awarded to the athletes.
Interacting with the young Wushu players, Khandu encouraged them to train harder and focus on the 2026 Asian Games scheduled to be held in Tokyo.
"As true sportspersons, you are not supposed to get disheartened but prepare harder for the next tournament. You might have lost this chance to show your talent but for us you already are heroes and medal winners," he said.
He also asked them not to worry about their future as the state's sports policy provides for a government job to excelling sportspersons.
"You need not worry. You are very young now. As and when the time comes, you would get a government job," the Chief Ministeradded.
Encouraging the players to concentrate on their training, the Chief Minister assured that all expenses of their training, dietary requirements, etc., would be borne by the state government keeping in mind the Tokyo Asian Games.
The Wushu game is yet to be included as an event in the Olympics.
He commended the Arunachal Olympic Association and Arunachal Wushu Association for taking initiatives in taking up the stapled visa issue with the Indian Olympic Association at the highest level, and assured support of the state government.
The three athletes expressed gratitude to the Chief Minister and people of the state for their overwhelming support in the face of disappointment for not being able to compete in the Asian Games for which they had prepared for years.
"But we are determined. We will prepare harder for the 2026 Asian Games and leave no stone unturned to win medals for our country and make Arunachal Pradesh proud," the players submitted.
"Representing India on the international stage and contributing through sports for the country and state by winning medals has always been and always will be our cherished dream," they added.