Bhaichung Bhutia's pro-Tibet stance failed to impress former athletes Milkha Singh and GS Randhawa who asserted sports arena is not the right place to make political statement and promised to take part in the April 17 Olympic torch relay.
Bhutia, the Indian football captain, has announced that he has sympathy for the Tibetans who are opposing the Beijing Olympic Games and would not run with the Olympic flame when it arrives in the capital on April 17.
"I sympathise with the Tibetans' cause. I'm against violence but I thought I should stand by the Tibetan people in their fight," Bhutia said.
Milkha Singh and GS Randhawa, however, differ in their view and believe sports and politics should stay apart.
"Personally, I feel sports and politics should not be mixed. And I'll surely take part in the relay," said the 'Flying Sikh'.
Randhawa said Bhaichung did what he felt was right but for him, participating in the relay was an honour, which he would not like to miss.
"Whoever takes what stance is completely up to them. I think Olympics stands for peace and harmony and politics should not be allowed to mingle with sport.
"I have received an invitation from the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and it's a matter of great pride and honour for me. I'll be there in the relay," said the legendary hurdler.
"If government is endorsing the relay and making all the arrangements, I think there is no reason for me to skip it," he said.