BENGALURU: India’s willingness to host the Olympics is well known. Though the nation hosted the 2010 Commonwealth Games, Olympics is a completely different giant. Indian Olympic Association (IOA) is keen on bringing other world events like Youth Olympic Games and Asian Games to better infrastructure.
“We are also looking at 2026 Youth Olympic Games. We’ve also asked for IOC Congress to be held here, and expressed our interest to host the 2030 Asian Games so that the infrastructure will be ready early. It will just be a two year gap to the Olympics,” said IOA president Narinder Batra.
IOA, though, has obstacles. The denial of visa to a Kosovo boxer last November prompted IOC to urge its members to not grant India any world events. The problem was further exacerbated when Pakistani shooters were also denied visa for ISSF World Cup.
“The Pakistan issue is different. The issue is Kosovo. But India doesn’t recognise Kosovo. IOC rules are that whichever countries are there, they have to be given visa. The IOC doesn’t recognise a country. It recognises the LOC. So it doesn’t recognise India but recognises IOA. There is now a discussion on that. Even Russia doesn’t recognise Kosovo but the Winter Games was held there. We will explain that situation. We are hopeful it will be sorted,” explained Batra.
With India having impressed in badminton, weightlifting, shooting, archery, boxing and wrestling, Batra hopes for a greater haul at the 2020 Olympics.
“The target is double-digit medals. If we have to go big for the 2032 Olympics, the target should be 25 medals at 2024 and 35-40 medals by 2028. You have to make sure the performance is such. The infrastructure is improving,” said Batra.