India’s Olympics Task force gears up for 2020
In Olympics 2016, India went in with its largest team ever, yet only got 2 medals home. Noticing the gap, Prime Minister Narendra Modi formulated an eight member task force, with names like Abhinav Bindra, India’s only gold medalist; national Badminton Coach Pulella Gopichand and former India hockey captain Viren Rasquinha; who would strategically lead the nation to a batter ranking at the next Olympics.
The committee has drafted out a report titled “Preparation of 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games”, elaborating on the plan for the next Olympics
Sports Authority of India (SAI) confirmed this in a tweet from their official account reads, “Olympic Task Force (OTF) met Union #Sports Secretary, Sh. Injeti Srinivas, IAS today and submitted its final report to the Government.”
The report consists of three parts- key takeaways, an executive summary and the main report, wherein all recommendations are applicable for Para athletes as well. The report insists on:
- Setting up an Empowered Steering Committee (ESC) to take complete charge preparation for Olympics 2020, backed by financial autonomy and a support cell for logistical issues of athletes.
- Appointing a High-Performance Director (HPD) of global renown to work in sync with the Empowered Steering Committee.
- Not restricting the salaries of Indian coaches and support staff.
- Encouraging former athletes to return as coaches and mentors.
- Issuing Pradhan Mantri Gold Card for elite potential athletes and their coaches and identifying them as ‘National assets’, thereby facilitating them emergency quota for air/train/bus tickets as well as hassle free access at various places.
- A 24×7 National Anti Doping Agency (NADA) helpline for athletes.
- Promoting sports science, in assistance with HPD, to ensure top quality services for athletes, be it medicine, nutrition advises, anti-doping, etc.
The report lays emphasis on being “athletic-centric, coach-led and system driven.” The testing ground will be Olympics 2020, and the preparations have truly begun!
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