A meeting of the reconstituted Mission Olympic Cell (MOC), with the newly inducted members, was held in New Delhi on Monday (December 13). The meeting was chaired by the Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports Anurag Singh Thakur.
The focus of the Mission Olympic Cell meeting was on how India can do better at the Paris Olympic Games in 2024.
Thakur, in a statement issued by the Sports Authority of India (SAI), said the Mission Olympic Cell has the responsibility of helping to create an atmosphere of greater positivity in the Indian sports ecosystem. He said it could be done by strengthening the institutional framework so that the nation could do better in 2024.
The Sports Minister called for a fair evaluation of performances. He also asked for a sharper focus on big-ticket events like the Olympic Games, Asian Games and Commonwealth Games.
Mission Olympic Cell not short of experience
The Mission Olympic Cell has been reconstituted with seven former international athletes. It is safe to say the MOC is not short on experience in guiding the Indian sports ecosystem.
The new inductees into the Mission Olympic Cell include World Athletics Championships long jump medallist Anju Bobby George, former Indian hockey captain Sardara Singh and rifle shooting legend Anjali Bhagwat.
Also included are former Indian football captain Baichung Bhutia, former hockey captain and CEO of Olympic Gold Quest Viren Rasquinha. Table tennis star Monalisa Mehta and badminton ace Trupti Murgunde are among the new inductees as well.
Thakur said it would be fair to examine what the Target Olympic Podium Scheme has achieved if it has helped India gain at the international level. He also pointed out that they will evaluate if the scheme has helped National Sports Federations improve their athletes from a high-performance perspective.
He said the members had the experience to suggest some changes that could tweak the system to help India get better results in the Olympic Games in Paris.
Thankur thanked the members for being a part of the Mission Olympic Cell. He also stated that with the exposure and involvement of the newly inducted sportspeople, a roadmap for the Paris Olympic Games in 2024 can be prepared. The roadmap will also keep next year’s Commonwealth Games and Asian Games in mind.
Current Athletics Federation of India President Shri Adille J. Sumariwalla is an Olympian. Additionally, the CEO of Target Olympic Podium Scheme Cdre. Pushpendra Garg is also a world champion sailor. This effectively means more than half the Mission Olympic Cell has worn Indian colors.