Judokas pay Rs 50,000 security deposit before leaving for Worlds test

Ironically, these judokas will be taking part in the event on their own in absence of financial aid from the government.

CHENNAI: Judo Federation of India (JFI) cleared participation of ten judokas for the World Championships that began in Tokyo on Sunday but not before making these athletes to deposit Rs 50,000 each as participation guarantee sum. The original India team comprised 11 judokas (seven men and four women) but one of the female participants backed out after visa denial. 

Ironically, these judokas will be taking part in the event on their own in absence of financial aid from the government. Given the financial constraints they face as each one of them has to spend at least `1.5 lakh to participate, the demand for the security deposit by the JFI has made life difficult for these athletes. The Championships, which will conclude on August 31, will be held in seven weight categories in men’s and women’s sections respectively. 

“Yes, each one of us has paid `50,000 as security deposit. We did that in the past as well when we participated in an international tournament on our own. We get the security deposit back once we return from the tournament,” a member of Indian team confirmed to this daily. “We take undertakings from participants as last-minute pullouts cost the federation dear. International Judo Federation (IJF) penalise national bodies not the athletes,” Man Mohan Jaiswal, secretary general JFI said, without mentioning the financial aspect.

“We cannot wait for sports ministry’s approval as there is a deadline to submit entries. These events give judokas valuable ranking points, which in turn help them to qualify for Olympics, so they go on their own,” Jaiswal added. “It’s true the national federation is being penalised for withdrawals. The national bodies might have devised ways to counter pullouts though there is no such rule (security deposit),” said a source from Judo Union of Asia. 

When questioned, a sports ministry official expressed unawareness over the issue. “It’s difficult to keep a track on each and everything. Anything can be said on the issue only on Monday,” asserted the official.
Vijay Kumar Yadav (-60kg), Jasleen Singh Saini (-66kg), Vishal Ruhil (-73kg), Jobandeep Singh (-81kg), Ajay Devilal Mistry (-90kg), Avtar Singh (-100kg) and Shubham Kumar (100+) will represent India in men’s category. Suchika Tariyal (-57kg), Garima Choudhary (-70kg) and Tulika Maan (+78kg) are India’s official entries in the women’s category. Jagriti was also included in the team but visa denial meant she had to withdraw from the event. It was learnt that she too had deposited the participation guarantee sum.

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