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Athletes and not officials to suffer if IOC suspends IOA: Bindra

Posted on Nov 28, 07:27PM | UNI

Beijing Olympics gold medallist shooter Abhinav Bindra today lambasted the country's sports administrators for pushing the athletes' interest to the back foot in a bitter campaign ahead of the controversy-marred December 5 IOA elections.

Bindra, who is currently taking part in an event in Munich, said he was shocked when to hear that India could be disaffiliated by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) if the IOA elections are held under the government's Sports Code.

'I did not know much what's happening in India. But I was shocked to be told that India could be disaffiliated by the IOC. It was shameful to be in such a situation,' said the shooter.

'The athletes and not the officials will suffer if the country is suspended by the IOC. It seems that the interest of the athletes have been pushed to the last agenda in the scheme of things. It is very unfortunate,' Bindra added.

Asked about corruption-tainted officials contesting the IOA elections, Bindra said, 'We need to run sports professionally and there is absolute need of clean people in running sport. We have to focus on athletes, on how to get medals at world level and not this kind of things happening now.

'We have done well in the last two years but these happenings seemed that we are going backwards instead of moving ahead. I know (Abhay Singh) Chautala very well, he was Indian Boxing Federation chief and I hope he takes steps for the involvement of sportspersons in running sports in the country,' he added.