Shillong, Sep 3: Referees, umpires and judges who have excelled in their field and brought honour to Meghalaya should be recognised in the state’s Sports Policy, Meghalaya State Olympic Association Working President John F Kharshiing said today.

Kharshiing was speaking after the MSOA felicitated FIFA-qualified assistant referee Ri-iohlang Dhar for being selected to officiate at the upcoming Women’s Asian Cup qualifiers in Lebanon.

While the policy lays out financial and other incentives for successful athletes and coaches, there should be scope for recognising the efforts of referees and the like, Kharshiing opined.

“It is not as if there are 20 FIFA referees from Meghalaya,” he said. “Dhar is the only one and she has brought a great deal of honour to Meghalaya.”

Dhar has been an assistant referee empanelled with the Asian Football Confederation since 2018. She is also a constable in the Meghalaya Police.

The MSOA Working President, while looking ahead to the 39th National Games (which were meant to be held in Meghalaya in 2022, though that target looks like it will be missed), also hoped that Meghalaya Police will create a women’s football team, on which the state can draw on for the national event. The police currently only have a football team for men.

(TSR photo. From left: MSOA Working President John F Kharshiing, MSOA General Secretary Chiranjib Choudhury, Ri-iohlang Dhar)

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