Sports minister Kiren Rijiju said IOC decision was necessary for well being of athletes
Union minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, Kiren Rijiju on Tuesday welcomed the International Olympics Committee's (IOC) decision to postpone the Tokyo Games to 2021 in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Kiren Rijiju said the IOC's decision was necessary and urged the Indian athletes not to lose heart. Rijiju also said that the ministry will do its best to provide better opportunities to the athletes and make sure India achieves its best medal tally in 2021.
"I welcome the decision of IOC to postpone #Tokyo2020 in view of the global pandemic. It's necessary for the well being of athletes from across the world. I urge our athletes not to lose heart. We'll create better opportunities so that we can have India's best medal tally in 2021," Kiren Rijiju said.
In an unprecedented move, the Olympic Games were postponed for the 1st time in its 124-year modern history.
After weeks of speculation and growing pressure from the global athletes community, the IOC announced the postponement. IOC president Thomas Bach had a phone conversation with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during which the later proposed a 1-year delay in hosting the Tokyo Games.
Athletes across the globe underwent a turbulent last few weeks due to the uncertainty over the Tokyo Games. Several countries across the world, including India, have imposed lockdowns to fight the outbreak of novel coronavirus and the athletes' training and preparation took a hit.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Indian Olympic Association welcomed the decision to postpone Tokyo Games, saying the athletes are relieved of training amid the Covid-19 pandemic.