Rio 2016: Haryana sports minister’s delegation hits the beach, ignores action

  • Saurabh Duggal, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Aug 17, 2016 01:55 IST
A file photo of Haryana minister Anil Vij. (H Photo)

Haryana sports minister Anil Vij led a nine-member delegation to Rio, which cost the state exchequer R1 crore. Before leaving, he tweeted: ‘leading a contingent to Olympics to encourage the Haryana players’.

But despite reaching Rio on Sunday night (Aug 14), they didn’t go to watch any event on Monday (Aug 15) and missed the quarterfinal bout of Vikas Krishan, DSP in the Haryana Police.

Discus thrower Seema Antil and Greco-Roman wrestler Ravinder Khatri, both from the state, competed on Monday, but the Vij-led delegation skipped them too.

Even on Tuesday, the delegation spent most of the time in its beach hotel and exploring the city, missing Haryana Greco-Roman wrestler Hardeep Singh’s bout.

The entourage comprises two BJP MLAs, Gyanchand Gupta and Randhir Singh Kapriwas, and Amit Arya, media adviser to the chief minister. Additional chief secretary-sports, KK Khandelwal and joint director-sports, OP Sharma, are also in the delegation. Vij’s private secretary and Khandelwal’s private secretary have also made the trip.

“It is the mockery of the system. On one side the sports department has failed to provide basic facilities to the players at grassroots level and no consumable sports items have been procured for the last two years. On the other side they (sports department) are spending lakhs of rupees on the Rio visit. The delegation has not even bothered to come and see the match of Vikas Krishan,” said a member of Indian contingent from the state.

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