Formation of OAI is a historic move: Randhir

Last Updated: Dec 11, 2011, 16:28 PM IST

New Delhi: The present and past Olympians of the country will get a platform to air their grievances with the formation of Olympian Association of India (OAI) on Monday, says IOA Secretary General Randhir Singh.

This is going to be a step towards organising the sportspersons who have represented the country at the highest platform, under one umbrella, said Randhir.

For long, the Olympians were looking for a platform to give their views about the state of sports in the country, the OAI will provide them this opportunity, added Randhir in a statement.

He also said the elections for new office-bearers for the Arjuna Awardee Association will also be held tomorrow.

"I along with Bishen Singh Bedi and other office-bearers are stepping down. It has been decided that the Association will have a totally new set of office-bearers and if need be there may be some new additions or amendments to its existing constitution," said Randhir.

"We want the sportspersons have their say through these two associations. They are the major stake holders and time has come that their views are heard and respected.”

"We don`t want any sportsperson to feel left out, hence this decision to revamp Arjuna Awardee Association and to make it pro-active," he added.

The IOA Secretary General said the formation of OAI is as per the Olympic Charter. World over such associations exist with the full blessing of their respective National Olympic Committees (NOCs).

He said setting of OAI seven months before the London Olympics is bound to give Indian participants taking part in it a great boost. Randhir said sportspersons will also have representation in the IOA.

"We in the IOA want sportspersons to have more say. I dare say from tomorrow onwards sportspersons will have their voices heard both in the IOA, National sports federations and in the sports ministry," he said.

PTI