SRINAGAR: The Sports Ministry’s Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) has approved the inclusion of Alpine Skiing athlete Mohammad Arif Khan in the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) Core group, until the Winter Olympics, scheduled to be held in Beijing, China next month.
Khan will take part in the Slalom and Giant Slalom events of Winter Olympics. He has also been approved an amount of Rs 17.46 Lakh under TOPS towards training in Europe and procurement of equipment, ahead of the grand event in China. Khan is presently training in Austria, where he is accompanied by his coach and Physio.
The MOC approved the 35 days European training camp for Arif, which commenced after his qualification for the Winter Olympics. He confirmed the slot in giant slalom during a competition in Montenegro in December last year.
A month earlier, he earned the slot in the Slalom event as well. With this feat Khan achieved the unique distinction of becoming the first Indian to win direct quota spots in two different Winter Olympics events, besides being the first athlete from the country to seal a berth at the Winter Olympic games 2022.
The Gulmarg J&K-based athlete had won two gold medals, in the Slalom and Giant Slalom events, at South Asian Winter Games, held in Uttarakhand in 2011.
Moreover, Arif Khan had earlier participated in both the editions of Khelo India Winter Games held in Gulmarg J&K.
Pertinently, Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha earlier sanctioned Rupees Ten Lakhs in favour of Arif Khan to undergo advanced training.
Jammu-based golfer Subhankar Sharma has been included in the TOPS Development Group.