Dr Nikolai Snesarev, the Belarusian coach of Indian middle distance and long distance runners for the Rio Olympics, has lashed out at top bosses of Indian Railways Sports Promotion Board for their indifferent attitude towards the present international athletes who have been hailed as the medal winning prospects for the Olympics, to be held next year.
Nikolai is here in Kolkata along with three Indian international athletes, Sudha Singh, Lalita Babar and O.P Jaisa who will be attending in the Kolkata Marathon race. Dr Nikolai extremely peeved at the Indian Railways Sports Board officials, said on Friday, “The athletes like Lalita, Sudha Singh and Jaisa who have been bringing glory for the country as well as for the Indian Railways for last few years are often threatened that if they do not take participate in the Railways organized small tournaments all around the country. All these three long distance runners have already earned coveted qualification for the Rio Olympics.
Still they are often forced to participate in the unimportant, local tournaments organized by Indian Railways Sports Board. How it can be possible?” The chief coach of the athletes added saying, “Even these athletes are often warned that their monthly salary will be stopped if they do participate in those tournaments.”
All the three athletes, sitting beside Nikolai on the same stage had same notion when they informed that all of them were forced to take part in a cross-country championship organized by Indian Railways Sports Board. It was held in Chittaranjan in West Bengal and more important information is that these three international athletes were provided second class arrangements for having participated in that unimportant tournament.