No Keshavan in IOA panel for 2022 Winter Olympics


Vinayak Padmadeo

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 13

With a watch on the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, the Indian Olympic Association has constituted a 15-member committee headed by the president of Ice Skating Association of India (ISAI) president, RK Gupta, to watch the preparedness and desires of the Indian athletes.

Importantly, six-time Olympian Shiva Keshavan has not been included within the committee. Keshavan, 38, participated within the luge occasion in six consecutive Winter Games from 1998 to 2018.

Yet, there are names within the committee, together with these of Abraham Ok Techi (secretary basic, Arunachal Pradesh Olympic Committee), Virender Sachdeva (affiliate EC member, IOA), C Laltlanthange (affiliate EC member, IOA), John F Kharsingh (working president, Meghalaya State Olympic Association), Balasaheb Laridge (secretary, Maharashtra Olympic Association), who’ve little or no information of what’s concerned on the earth of Winter Olympics.

I’ve at all times desired to work for the promotion of winter sports activities in India. I can add actual worth since I’ve many years of expertise and know what must be accomplished for winter sports activities within the nation. I’m saddened to be excluded from winter sports activities improvement tasks and I see a scarcity of athlete stakeholders. —Shiva Keshavan, Six-time winter olympian

The committee was constituted by IOA president Narinder Batra on May 27 to “review the current status of Olympic Winter Sports in India and submit a report to the President IOA including its recommendations and suggestions required towards increased representation of India in Winter Olympic Games as well as realisation of medals.” Batra was unavailable for feedback.

‘Saddened’

Keshavan, who has plans to carry up a excessive efficiency coaching centre for Winter Games in India, was stunned by the choice.

“I have always desired to work for the promotion of winter sports in India and I have given my availability to IOA, Ministry and sports federations. I can add real value since I have decades of experience and know what needs to be done for winter sports in the country,” Keshavan advised The Tribune.

“I am saddened to be excluded from winter sports development projects and I see a lack of athlete stakeholders. But I am always here to support the cause of winter sports,” he added.

Incidentally, the chairman of the newly-formed committee has written a letter to federations and different stakeholders to supply names of three probables who have to be beneath 25 years of age, gold medallists and should have had coaching stints exterior India for at least 30 days within the final two years.

‘Needless appointments’

Meanwhile, some within the IOA felt that these appointments — over seven committees have been fashioned in the previous few weeks — are being accomplished to shore up help. “What’s the point in making new committees? It is being done as a favour to some and to bring his (Batra) supporters in the IOA fold,” stated a supply.



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