TARGET OLYMPIC PODIUM SCHEME
The Sports Authority of India Director General Neelam Kapur announced that The Sports Ministry has earmarked Rs 100 crore for the funding of athletes under the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) for their preparations for 2020 Olympics.
About TOPS – Objective of the Scheme
The Target Olympic Podium Scheme is a flagship program of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports which is an attempt to provide assistance to India’s top athletes. The Scheme looks to add a premium to the preparations of these athletes so that they can win Olympic medals in 2020 and 2024 Olympics. Under the Scheme, the Department of Sports shall identify athletes who are potential medal winners in 2020 / 2024 Olympics.
The idea of the Scheme is to also keep an eye in the future and fund a Developmental Group of Athletes who are medal prospects for the Olympic Games in Paris in 2024 and Los Angeles Games in 2028.
To fulfill the objective of this scheme, a committee (TOPS Elite Athletes’ Identification Committee) was constituted to identify the elite athletes who could achieve the Olympic podium. The Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports is responsible for appointment of TOPS members with emphasis on ensuring representation from ‘High-Priority’ sports (Archery, Badminton, Boxing Hockey, Shooting and Wrestling).
Scheme of Assistance:
The main objective of the Scheme is to provide added impetus towards the athlete’s preparations, over and above what is planned under the Annual Calendar of Training and Competition (ACTC). The selected athletes can seek assistance under the Scheme for the following :- –
(a) Customized training under reputed coaches at institutes having world-class facilities.
(b) Participation in international competition.
(c) Purchase of equipment.
(d) Services of support staff/personnel like Physical Trainer, Sports Psychologist, Mental Trainer and Physiotherapist etc.
(e) Any other support specific to the sport discipline.
(f) Out-of-pocket allowance of Rs. 50,000/- (Rupees fifty thousand only) a month to the athletes as an incentive.