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TOPS scheme under threat of failure, could lead to another Rio-like disaster, says panel

186   //    27 Dec 2017, 19:17 IST

Abhinav Bindra heads the TOPS committee
Abhinav Bindra heads the TOPS committee

What's the story?

India's poor performance at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro has been criticised enough in the past year and a half but it appears that not much has changed in terms of athletes receiving the necessary support from authorities in their efforts to bring home a host of medals.

The Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) had originally aimed to train and prepare Indian elite athletes in the best way possible, but it seems that the implementation of the scheme has been far from satisfactory.

The committee responsible for the scheme is led by former Olympic Gold medallist Abhinav Bindra and it is unfortunate to hear that the committee has issued its concern over a repeat of the Rio disaster where India only managed a silver and a bronze medal overall.

In case you didn't know...

Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore had in September announced that each athlete would receive a stipend of Rs 50,000 in their bid to prepare for top competitions.But part from this stipend, none of the other amenities are fully available for athletes even now.

The heart of the matter

The committee continues to be left irate by the faulty implementation of a scheme that promised much to each athlete and regular delays as well as proposals of athletes being stuck in red tape have led to many of them feeling hard done by while they offer their best in training and fitness.

As we speak, a total of 182 athletes have been added to the list of athletes covered under the TOPS program.

What's next?

The Commonwealth and Asian Games are next on the agenda and concerns of non-performance remain inexplicably high in the Indian camp training to bring home gold medals at the Games.

Author's take

It is truly shocking that despite the poor showing in Rio, India continues to suffer from issues beyond the control of athletes who appear to be losing the most from yet another seemingly doomed experiment.

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