International Paralympic Committee allows Indian para-athletes to compete under the IPC Flag
In some encouraging news for India’s para-athlete's, the International Paralympic Committee(IPC) has provided permission for the Indian contingent to participate in International competitions under the IPC flag.
"In order not to penalise Indian athletes, we have decided to enable athletes who are already licensed in our SDMS (Sport Data Management System) to participate in competitions. Please note that these athletes will not represent their country but will be competing under the IPC flag for the moment," the letter, written by IPC CEO Xavier Gonzalez to the sports ministry, read.
The governing body had derecognised the Paralympic Committee of India (PCI) on account of infighting in April and a week prior to the de-recognition, the President of the Committee Rajesh Tomar had been suspended to due to the total mismanagement of the National championships that were held in Ghaziabad, in March. Following that derecognition, the sports ministry followed suit and suspended the Committee.
“We take good note that the Government of India has also suspended PCI. We do appreciate your concern about the athletes, and would like to assure you that we also have their best interest in mind and we will make sure they are not too affected by this sanction," the letter added.
Decision to benefit around 300 athletes
The Secretary-General of the PCI, J Chandrasekhar said that the decision would now allow close to 300 athletes to take part in international competitions.
"Each year, every national body will have to enter names of para-athletes to the SDMS for IPC to grant license. We already have around 300 Indian para-athlete's who have already got license in view of the now postponed Indian Open Para Games (which was to be held early this month)," he said.