"TNAA president Walter Davaram too said a lot of questions remained unanswered about exactly what happened at Doha. Santhi was not allowed to take part in the 1,500 m. "
Chennai, Dec 18 - Notwithstanding the controversy about her gender, the Tamil Nadu government Monday rewarded Santhi Soundarajan who won the silver in the 800 metres for women at the Doha Asiad.
Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi personally presented her a cheque for Rs.1.5 million that the state had earlier announced for her, at the state secretariat.
Santhi came to receive her award, dressed in a sari and accompanied by her parents.
Karunanidhi also presented a colour TV to Santhi following reports that her parents, hailing from Kathakkurichi village in Pudukkottai district, could not watch their daughter winning the silver medal.
'I have received no official communication so far from authorities of the Asian Games,' she said, referring to reports that she had failed the gender test and is not qualified to compete in women's events.
Indian Chess Grand Master Sasikiran Krishnan, long jumper Anju George and squash player Saurav Ghoshal were also presented Rs.2 million, Rs.1.5 million and Rs.1 million respectively for winning gold, silver and bronze in the Asiad.
'We have not received any official communique so far. The Olympic Council in Doha has to convey it to the Indian Olympic Association, which in turn will inform the Athletics Federation of India (AFI). The AFI will then inform its State unit,' said C.K. Valson, joint secretary of the Tamil Nadu Athletics Association (TNAA).
Valson said Santhi could go on appeal after two years.
TNAA president Walter Davaram too said a lot of questions remained unanswered about exactly what happened at Doha. Santhi was not allowed to take part in the 1,500 m.
State Higher Education Minister K. Ponmudy, Sports and Youth Welfare Minister T.P.M. Moideen Khan, Sports Secretary Ambedkar Rajkumar and SDAT Member-Secretary Apoorva were present at the function.