The Sports Authority of India (SAI) is reportedly working on cutting down on numbers of the Indian contingent for the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, beginning from April 4.
According to an SAI source, the authority is trimming down the numbers of the contingent including officials and support staff also athletes’ family expenses. It has removed 21 names from the list, including the Chief Medical Officer and an assistant physiotherapist of the IOA, besides other officials of the National Sports Federations (NSFs).
“I just wanted to tell that the CWG sports delegation which is going. The part of their payment is actually being given by the Government of India. Because the CWG federation only gives about 15,000 dollars per sportsperson and over and above that is given by the government,” said the source.
“Secondly, there are certain guidelines that these are the number of officials that are supposed to go per athletes. And that is supposed to cover the support staff and the doctors etc. The number of officials that have been outlined in the proposal of the IOA(Indian Olympics Association) is exceeding these numbers by about 40. In one or two cases, the father and mother of a person are also going. As per the guidelines, we are happy to give support staff which is genuine. In certain cases, the quota for the particular discipline does not cover the coaches and support staff needed. So from the SAI side, we have actually sent 10 more coaches as per the request of the federation,” it explained.
“At the same time, while we are not in any way cutting expenditure of the support staff which is required like coaches, doctors, physiotherapist etc, where officials are not connected. There the government is going to have a look because they are going to pay for it. So, we will not hold back on any genuine support that the sportsperson needs and that the athletes need. We have funded 10 more people over and above the quota. As per government rules, the family members are not allowed to go on government expenses,” the source continued.
IOA President Narinder Batra has questioned SAI’s decision of reducing the number of contingent size, while adding that he did not see the list and would consult with the authorities soon.