Kumari Sangeeta, national pole vault champion, ignored by athletics officials

Updated on Jul 11, 2017 09:59 AM IST

Kumari Sangeeta, national women pole vault champion, was ignored for the felicitation ceremony organised by the Odisha government following the end of the Asian Athletics Championship.

Kumari Sangeeta suffered a third degree injury at the Asian Athletics Championship which required surgery.(HT Photo)
Kumari Sangeeta suffered a third degree injury at the Asian Athletics Championship which required surgery.(HT Photo)
Hindustan Times, Bhubaneswar | By

On Monday, while Indian athletics officials were busy attending a felicitation ceremony organised by the Odisha government, injured national women pole vault champion Kumari Sangeeta was sulking in her room.

The day after India toppled Asian giants China to win the overall title at the Asian Championships, Sangeeta, injured during Sunday’s pole vault event, felt neglected. “Since morning no one has come here. I don’t know what to do. The doctor says it is a serious injury and I can’t move,” she told HT.

Surprisingly, the felicitation ceremony was being held at the official team hotel, the same hotel where Sangeeta was staying.

When HT contacted Sibani Tripathy, the medical officer who treated her at a hospital here, said it was a third degree injury and Sangeeta needed surgery. “I don’t know whether the surgery will be done here or at Patiala because she is in the national camp,” he said.

National coach Radhakrishnan Nair said all the female managers are either on their way back home or busy packing to board their flights.

When asked what arrangement has been made for Sangeeta, Nair said he had no idea.

“If the athlete is insured, all her expenses will be borne by the government, otherwise the athlete has to manage on her own,’’ he said, adding since Sangeeta joined the national camp only 10 days ago, it is unlikely that she would get an insurance cover.

After the Asian meet, Sangeeta along with other top athletes were supposed to travel to Guntur for the inter state competition on July 13.

Since she got injured, there were no alternative arrangements for her till Monday morning. It seems it wasn’t on the priority list of the national coach.

“Yesterday was Sunday, so we couldn’t get her ticket changed. Now I will look into it,’’ Radhakrishnan Nair said.

Sangeeta got injured during her second attempt when she failed to plant the pole in the box and slipped. The accident happened around 5pm but she was taken to the hospital three hours later.


    Navneet Singh, who has been a journalist for 15 years, is part of the Delhi sports team and writes on Olympic sports, particularly athletics and doping. .

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