The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has decided on a raise in monthly pension for former cricketers and match officials.

In a statement, the BCCI confirmed that with effect from June 1, 2022, all former cricketers - both men and women - will see a substantial hike in monthly pension.

As per the existing policy, all first-class cricketers who have played 25 to 49 matches up to the end of 2003-04 season get Rs 15,000 a month. But now, they will receive Rs 30,000 a month.

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Earlier,  those who have played 50 to 74 matches and 75 and above matches up to end of 2003-04 season got Rs. 22,500 and Rs. 30,000 respectively. But as per the revised structure, they will receive Rs 45,000 and Rs 52,500 a month respectively.

In 2015, the BCCI had stated that all Test cricketers who retired before December 31, 1993 and have played more than 25 matches will get Rs. 50,000 per month. But as per the new policy, the amount will now be hiked to Rs 70,000 a month.

Earlier, women cricketers who played 10 or more Tests received Rs. 22,500 per month and those who have played 5 to 9 Tests received Rs. 15,000 per month. But now, that fee structure has also been revised.

“It is extremely important that the financial well-being of our former cricketers is taken care of. The players remain the lifeline and as a Board, it is our duty to be by their side once their playing days are over. The umpires have been unsung heroes and the BCCI truly values their contribution,” the BCCI president Sourav Ganguly said in a statement.

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The Board secretary Jay Shah added: “The welfare of our cricketers be it former or present is a top priority, and increasing pension amounts is a step in that direction. The BCCI values the contribution the umpires have made over the years and this is one way to express our gratitude for their diligent services to Indian Cricket. A total of around 900 personnel will get the benefit of the scheme with more than 75% of the beneficiaries getting a 100 % raise.”

The Indian Cricketers' Association (ICA) had been demanding about this since its inception in 2019.

Rangaswamy expresses her gratitude

Shantha Rangaswamy, former India women's team captain, who is now a representative of the Indian Cricketer's Association in the BCCI apex council, lauded the Board secretary Jay Shah for helping out the former cricketers."I would like to thank Mr Jay Shah on behalf of the ICA and all former cricketers for his single-handed efforts to enable the former cricketers to make ends meet in the light of inflation and rising prices," Rangaswamy told Sportstar .

"I would also like to congratulate him for his single-handed effort which has resulted in a fantastic achievement in the IPL media rights e-auction bid," she added.