Tuesday 16 Aug 2022

National Games: 7-year delay costs Goa dearly

THE GOAN NETWORK | JULY 01, 2022, 12:10 AM IST


After multiple postponements mostly due to Goa's unpreparedness to host them, the next edition of the National Games is now slated to be held in Gujarat in September-October.

Goa government's negative response to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) missive that it is not in the position to host the games in September this year turned to be the final straw that broke the camel's back. 

One of the reasons cited by the Goa government in its response to the IOA was that the monsoons make September not conducive to hold the September event.

Sports Minister Govind Gaude had in the recent past ruled out hosting the Games in September and that the State would seek from the IOA time to hold the games in December. 

However, IOA on Wednesday announced that Gujarat will hold the Games in multiple cities in September-October.

According to IOA secretary general Rajiv Mehta the top brass accepted the proposal of the Gujarat Olympic Association (GOA) which was backed by that State's government since Goa expressed its inability to host it this year.

Mehta said, it is good for everyone that the games will finally be held after a long gap and later editions can be held back to back.

The last edition of the National Games was hosted by Kerala in 2015, the same year Goa signed the host city agreement with IOA for the next edition. However, the games were postponed multiple times, mostly due to Goa's unpreparedness and inability to ready the infrastructure.

The Goa Olympic Association (GOA) meanwhile has not taken kindly to the development. GOA sources claimed that the current committee of the IOA does not have the authority to take such a decision and is defunct.

Mehta, meanwhile, said that various national bodies (sports federations) of different sports disciplines had consented to the proposal to hold the games in Gujarat, adding that post-facto approval will then be sought from the IOA's general body.

"We will approach the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court where cases are pending related to the IOA, to permit us to hold the GBM for the approvals," Mehta said.

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