Should India Send Athletes to Olympic Games?

Narendra Modi flagging off the “Run For Rio”, at Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium, in New Delhi on July 31, 2016

Narendra Modi flagging off the “Run For Rio”, at Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium, in New Delhi on July 31, 2016

Analysts suggest that instead of allowing an ordinary politician to manage the highly competitive sports department, the government should appoint a relatively successful athlete to spearhead the sports activities in the country.

After India’s poor performance at the recent Rio Olympics, the country has decided to take steps to help athletes do better at the future games.

The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, recently announced at the meeting of the Council of Ministers that a Task Force will be set up to prepare a comprehensive action plan for effective participation of Indian sports persons in the next three Olympic games in 2020, 2024, and 2028.

At the 2016 Rio Olympics, India sent a record number of 118 athletes who could win only 2 medals: 1 bronze and 1 silver.

Woman wrestler Sakshi Malik won bronze medal in freestyle 58 kg category and shuttler P. V. Sindhu won a silver medal.

It is a common observation that various governments in India have been wasting money worth thousands of crores of rupees on athletes who continue to fail at international sports events such as Olympics.

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In the past four Olympics (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016), India sent 330 athletes who could win only 12 medals including only one gold.

It is believed that the Task Force that Modi has proposed will stop sending athletes in international events because most of them are giving a bad name to the country. Plus, the government has no right to squander public money at will.

Meanwhile, sports minister Vijay Goel has decided to conduct a thorough review of India’s performance at Rio Olympics, 2016.

[ आओ मिल कर करें एक नये और समृद्ध भारत का निर्माण ]

According to a government communiqué released Wednesday, the minister has written individual letters to each of the athletes who participated in the Rio Olympics, seeking their feedback and suggestions.

But it is a general feeling that it is going to be a futile exercise and will not help improve India’s performance at major sports events.

Analysts suggest that instead of allowing an ordinary politician to manage the highly competitive sports department, the government should appoint a relatively successful athlete to spearhead the sports activities in the country.

Photo courtesy: Press Information Bureau

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