An unidentified lady (in red shirt) walks besides flag-bearer Sushil Kumar during the Indian team's parade at the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games 2012 in London. (PTI Photo by Manvender Vashist)
A woman who gatecrashed India's parade at the Olympic opening ceremony was a member of the cast from the extravaganza but should not have been with the athletes, London 2012 chief Sebastian Coe said on Sunday.
Indian officials were incensed by her unauthorised presence alongside flag-bearing wrestler Sushil Kumar on Friday, wearing red and blue in complete contrast to female members of the contingent who were sporting yellow saris and blue blazers.
"She made it into the opening ceremony. She obviously should not have been there," Coe told a news conference.
"I can now confirm that she was a cast member. She was slightly over excited."
The apparent lack of security angered the Indian Olympic Association.
"How did they allow her in? It was a security lapse. Nobody knows who she was. She looks like an Indian," IOA vice president Tarlochan Singh said.
"She walked along in the front line. Her dress was totally different. She was not wearing an identity card. This should have been noticed at an earlier stage, but nobody bothered."
The lavish opening ceremony, which included hundreds of cast members and was hailed around the world as a success, was watched by a packed 60,000-strong crowd in the Olympic stadium.
Indian news websites said the woman was a postgraduate student from Bangalore.
Security concerns dogged the run up to the Games with the British government having to draft in thousands of troops to help guard Olympic venues after private contractor G4S said it could not supply enough staff.
"This was bizarre. We will ask for an apology," acting Indian chef de mission PKM Raja was quoted as saying by the Times of India newspaper.
"The Indian contingent was shown for just 10 seconds and to think this lady hogged all the limelight."
The appearance of a mystery woman in the Indian contingent at the opening ceremony of the London Olympics has infuriated the Indian Olympic Association (IOA), which has asked the organisers to thoroughly probe the incident.
"There is no mysterious girl. The incident just exposes the tall claims made by the organisers regarding security. Just imagine if this had happened in India that a person without any accredation had walked ino the main arena that too along with a contingent all hell would have broken out in this side of the planet," an IOA spokesperson said.
"IOA has filed a complaint and is waiting for a reply from London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG). Some say the girl was a volunteer, even if that was the case how she managed to sneak in without accredation card hanging around her and if she was security cover then she had no business to be walking in front of the contingent hogging all the limelight," the official said.
(With inputs from Reuters, IANS)