Even a week after her return to Hyderabad after winning the historic silver medal in Rio Olympics in badminton, P.V. Sindhu continues to receive rewards, both cash and kind, from governments and private individuals. According to an estimate by sources close to her, so far Sindhu has received rewards and gifts worth around Rs 25 crore and still counting.
She has received a Rs 5 crore cheque from Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and a Rs 3 crore cheque from Andhra Pradesh CM Chandrababu Naidu. She is yet to finalise her schedule to visit other states to receive her prizes. Sindhu’s brand value in the advertising world has gone up from around Rs 20 lakh per endorsement to Rs 2-3 crore. Baseline Ventures director R. Ramakrishnan told the media in Hyderabad that Sindhu would be signing some endorsements with leading companies.
There is a long list of state governments, non-governmental bodies and private firms and individuals seeking her appointment to felicitate her. To skip the media glare, Sindhu will not resume practice sessions at Gopichand’s academy from end August as was earlier decided, sources told The Sunday Guardian. She will soon meet President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi and receive rewards from Delhi, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa and Gujarat governments. Of the estimated total rewards of around Rs 25 crore, as many as Rs 13.10 crore is in cash from five states, three sports bodies, a public sector undertaking, Bharat Petroleum and Indian Railways, while the rest is in the form of residential plots, commercial and agricultural lands and luxury cars and jewellery.
Sindhu, who bagged the Khel Ratna award this week, has already made it clear that she might not take up the government job offers as her immediate priority is to play. She is not averse to accepting offers of cash and kind from private people, albeit she will act on the advice of her parents and coach Gopichand, said sources. Telangana CM KCR has directed the Chief Secretary and the sports officials to search for a suitable place for her house site. An official in the Hyderabad collector’s office told this newspaper that the search is mainly focused on the posh Madhapur area so that she can be close to her academy. The plot to be gifted to Sindhu might be valued at least Rs 7 crore.
The Delhi government has announced Rs 2 crore for her, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh governments have announced Rs 50 lakh each, while Gujarat is yet to announce a reward, though Chief Minister Vijay Rupani who came to Hyderabad on Friday on a private visit told the media that soon he would invite Sindhu to his state for felicitation. The All India Football Federation has announced a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh, the Bharat Petroleum Rs 75 lakh, the Badminton Association of India Rs 50 lakh and the Olympic Association of India Rs 30 lakh. Indian Railways has announced a reward of Rs 50 lakh for Sindhu.
Besides that, Bollywood star Salman Khan has announced a gift of Rs 25 lakh to Sindhu, while another Dubai based NRI Mukkuttu Sebastian has offered a prize of Rs 50 lakh to her. Former Karnataka CM H.D. Kumaraswamy has announced another Rs 10 lakh to her and a felicitation. Cricketer Chamundeswarnath has announced a BMW SUV worth Rs 2 crore which would be handed over to her through the hands of Sachin Tendulkar soon and Mahindra Automobiles too would offer her a topline SUV. Two jewellery chains—one from Visakhapatnam and another from Hyderabad— have announced gift hampers.
What has confused Sindhu, her parents and coach Gopichand is the number of gifts offered by real estate firms. Vijaya Chander, a filmmaker turned owner of a large parcel of land, has offered her a two-acre plot in Medak district.