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Athletes and officials begin travel to Tokyo in batches for Paralympics

Besides the high jumper, four other athletes and few officials will also take the same flight to the host country where the quadrennial event is scheduled from August 24 to September 5.

Published: 17th August 2021 11:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 17th August 2021 11:01 PM   |  A+A-

Men wearing face masks ride bicycles along the wall installed to close off a park being prepared for the Olympics and Paralympics Games in Tokyo. (Photo | AP)

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Gold medallist at 2016 Rio Paralympics, Mariyappan Thangavelu, who will be India's flag bearer at the upcoming Tokyo Paralympics is among the first batch of para athletes to fly to Japan's capital early Wednesday morning.

Besides the high jumper, four other athletes and few officials will also take the same flight to the host country where the quadrennial event is scheduled from August 24 to September 5.

The Paralympic Committee of India (PCI) secretary Gursharan Singh, who is also the Chef de Mission, reached Tokyo a few days ago along with Covid-19 Liaison Officer amongst others.

Singh has attended meetings, and has been looking after various kinds of logistics as well so that the Indian participants do not face any kind of problems once they reach the host country.

PCI president Deepa Malik threw more light on the work Singh and team are currently up to.

"More than logistics, it is about taking over the accommodations, handing over the rooms, setting up our NPC office over there and so on. Besides, Covid Liaoning is also one of the most important factors out there. The office also has to be established there, The major thing is if there are any last minute changes in accreditation or anything else, all that has to be corrected before they (athletes) reach to avoid last minute hitches," said Malik, who will be travelling on Wednesday evening.

The rest of the athletes and officials will travel on various dates, depending upon when their competition is scheduled.

For instance, with shooting events starting from August 30, the shooters are likely to leave on August 23 while the badminton contingent will leave on the 25th.

Overall, the Indian Paralympic contingent comprises 54 para athletes, who will compete in nine different disciplines. It is also the largest ever team sent to the Games and Malik is confident of a good show from India.



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