Vijay Goel: Proud of taking charge of sports

The Minister reiterated the Government's commitment to providing and improving facilities for the sportspersons and bringing in transparency in its functioning.

"We aim to take sports to every village of the country," says Vijay Goel.   -  PTI

In his first interaction with the media since taking charge as the Sports and Youth Affairs Minister, Vijay Goel reiterated the Government's commitment to providing and improving facilities for the sportspersons and bringing in transparency in its functioning while avoiding tricky issues for a 'later date'.

Accompanied by IOA president N. Ramachandran, secretary general Rajeev Mehta and India's chef-de-mission for Rio Olympics Rakesh Gupta, Goel — who was also handed over the first official athletes' kit for the Games — praised the work done so far by the Government in supporting the athletes.

“I am proud of taking charge of sports just before our biggest ever contingent leaves for the Rio Olympics. With customised training and no budgetary constraints, we are confident of our athletes' performance in Rio. However, medal count is not our sole focus. We aim to take sports to every village of the country, bring the Olympics to every person,” he said.

Goel also said that the Government was planning to put up giant screens across the city including public areas like parks and metro stations to broadcast the Olympics and was in talks with various stakeholders for the same. “Hopefully it will work out. We will also be exploring the possibility of doing the same in other cities but it will take some time,” he added.

Goel, however, refused to comment on the contentious sports code that has been pending for a long time now, saying he would rather have a good, strong legislation than a hurried one with loopholes.

The Sports Authority of India director general Injeti Srinivas expressed hope that India would return with at least 10 medals from Rio and confirmed that all the Indian participants including officials and the media have been given instructions and advisories to ensure their safety.