Don’t mix politics with Games, says Speaker
"Politics should not be mixed with Olympics”, the Lok Sabha Speaker, Somnath Chatterjee, told Chinese ambassador to India, Zhang Yan, during a meeting in the capital on Friday. The Olympics is an event “beyond politics”, a statement from the Speaker’s office said.
When Zhang referred to the obstacles being faced by the passage of the ongoing Olympic torch relay, “I am sure the Olympics 2008, being hosted by your country, will be a great success. I convey all my best wishes. If anybody has any different view on any issue, there are other ways of expressing that. They should not take law into their hands.”
The Lok Sabha Speaker expressed confidence that the torch relay in India would pass off peacefully. “I am told very eminent sports people are taking part in the relay in India”, he added.
When the developments in Tibet were referred to, Chatterjee stressed, “We want the people to live peacefully and harmoniously everywhere.” While reiterating India’s position that Tibet is an integral part of China, the Speaker said New Delhi wanted the Olympics to succeed.
“It is an honour to host (the) Olympics. Every major country is trying to host it…we have successfully conducted Asian Games. We will be doing our best to conduct the Commonwealth Games successfully in 2010…we are also trying to host Olympics in 2020.”
The meeting between the Speaker and the Chinese ambassador was in the nature of a courtesy call. It was their first formal meeting since Zhang took over as ambassador.