Jiji steps in to stop malpractice at SAI

Many athletes have cried foul in the past over daily allowance alloted to them during tours hardly reaching them, accusing accompanying officials of stealing it. Expressing concerns over their apathy, Sports Authority of India Director General Jiji Thomson on Monday said in future the money will be remitted directly to the athletes.

“I recently heard of an instance where athletes on a training tour were made to sign on blank papers. They never got their due daily allowance instead the federation officials swallowed it. This is very bad and I’ve got a plan to stop it. In the coming months, we’ll be implementing a method wherein the money will be directly credited to an athlete’s account,” said Thomson on the concluding day of his three-day visit to the SAI South Centre campus.

SAI will be conducting its Governing Body meeting on Wednesday in New Delhi following a gap of two years. While revealing that he has a ten-point agenda in a bid to make SAI more effective, Thomson said clamping down on corruption and non-performing coaches would be his main goals.

“I plan to implement e-tender procurement. Henceforth whenever SAI calls for a tender, interested parties will have to file their bid documents through the Internet. It will be password protected. Once the tenders are opened, the parties will get to know. I believe corruption has come down heavily in government sectors where this has been implemented. There will be no favouritism.

“Also there have instances where coaches in smaller centres don’t report to work and still draw their salary. At the small centres, there is no one to monitor them. Some of them even work in private companies thus earning from both the parties. I will be introducing bio-metric identification so that they can’t escape,” he said.
There has been several complaints over the poor state of hockey astro-turf at SAI and Thomson said it will be replaced with a new one in 6-8 months. “The tenders have been called for. Since the main base is already there, only the turf has to replaced. I believe we should have new one soon .”

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