Indian athletes to wear unbranded apparel at Tokyo Olympics after backlash

The kits have received backlash for the involvement of the Chinese manufacturer apparel Li-Ning.

This comes days after India unveiled its official kits, with Raymond roped in as the official styling partner for the ceremonial kits and Beijing-based company Li-Ning coming in for the sports apparel.   -  Twitter/ Department of Sports, Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports

The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has decided that the country's athletes will wear unbranded sports apparel in the Tokyo Olympics to be held from July 23 to August 8. 

This comes days after India unveiled its official kits, with Raymond roped in as the official styling partner for the ceremonial kits and Beijing-based manufacturer Li-Ning coming in for the sports apparel in a ceremony which also marked the 50-day mark heading to the Games in Tokyo.

The kits have received backlash for the involvement of the Chinese manufacturer apparel.

READ: Tokyo Olympics: India might have 2 flag-bearers says IOA chief Narinder Batra

"We are aware of the emotions of our fans and we in a IOA have decided that we will withdraw from our existing contract with an apparel sponsor," IOA President Narinder Batra and Secretary General Rajeev Mehta said in a statement on Tuesday.

READ: India likely to send 190-strong contingent to Olympics: Batra

"We would like our athletes to be able to train and compete without having to answer questions about the apparel brand. As it is, they have all been challenged by the pandemic over the past year and a quarter and we want them to be not distracted," the statement added.

The IOA officials also said "they were aware of the dedicated efforts by the nation’s elite athletes and their coaching and support staff and are looking forward to a good performance by them Olympic Games".

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