IOA clears Saina's father's entry to CWG village

Saina was left a bit dishevelled and disoriented late on Monday night as Singh was denied admission to the Games Village on arrival as he is an 'extra team official.'

India's Saina Nehwal with her father Harvir Singh and shooters Apoorvi Chandela, Mehuli Ghosh and Tejasvini Sawant at the Athletes Village at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 2018.   -  PTI

Less than 24 hours after ace shuttler Saina Nehwal took to Twitter to vent her frustration on her father Harvir Singh's name being dropped from the official list for the Commonwealth Games, the Indian Olympic Association acted swiftly and has cleared Singh's name.

Saina thanked the IOA for the support and tweeted: "Thank u so much @ioaindia for the support and help sorting out my father’s accreditation card in such short notice ..Hopefully it will b great for the matches ahead ..and I m sorry for all the trouble." (sic)

The 2010 Commonwealth Games gold medallist wrote a letter to a senior IOA office-bearer currently in Gold Coast where she had said that if her father’s name is not cleared as “an official”, she will not take part in the quadrennial extravaganza.

“I msgd u and tried to call u but u didn’t pick up the call but there is so much issue going on with my father...if his accreditation is no (sic) cleared as an official I am not going to play the matches,” Saina wrote in her letter addressed to the IOA.

Earlier, Saina was left a bit dishevelled and disoriented late on Monday night as Singh was denied admission to the Games Village on arrival.

The two had travelled together with the rest of the badminton team and Singh was lone person to meet with the distasteful experience as all the others (10 players, three officials and the seven extra officials) were duly admitted to the village.

This, included, Pusarla Vijaya, mother of P.V. Sindhu, who like Singh was not assigned with any position in the list cleared by the Union Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs on March 26 for participation in the Games.

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The unfortunate incident came to light when Saina herself took to her Twitter handle and wrote, “Surprise to see that when we started from India for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, my father was confirmed as a team official and I paid the whole amount for that. But when we came to the Games Village, his name was cut from team official category...and he can’t even stay with me.” Later on Tuesday morning, this was followed by two other tweets, “ He can’t see my matches and he can’t enter village nor he can meet me in anyway....what kind of support is this?”  “ I wanted his support as I regularly take him to my competitions...but I don’t understnad why nobody informed me all this earlier...that he can’t enter the Village.”

In response, the Indian Olympic Association messaged through its handle, Team India, Mr. Harvir Singh is an extra team official. As stated in the CDM manual of the Gold Coast CWG 2018 and repeatedly conveyed to the BAI (Badminton Association of India) the payment of money for accreditation for an extra team official does not include bed in the Games Village.”

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The Indian chef-de-mission, Vikram Singh Sisodia, who also confirmed the incident and termed it “unfortunate” said Singh was consequently booked to a local hotel and a day pass has been acquired in his name so it would enable him to be with his daughter from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. “The officials of the village have been quite strict with the implementation of the rules which state that the total number of officials cannot overshoot 33 per cent of the total strength of the team.

“ I think that the blame for this can be laid only at the door of the Badminton Association of India and its failure to take up the issue with the Indian Olympic Association in right earnest and at the right time.”

(With inputs from A. Vinod)

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