Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju, on Thursday, said the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) has taken a serious note of India’s concern over shooting’s exclusion from the 2022 CWG and has agreed to work towards finding a solution.
Rijiju, along with Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president Narinder Batra and secretary general Rajeev Mehta, met CGF chief Louise Martin and CEO David Grevemberg in the capital and discussed several issues, including the exclusion of shooting from the Birmingham Games.
“We understand that shooting is an optional sport at the Commonwealth Games, but we had expressed our concern on the sport being excluded and the issue has been well received by the Commonwealth Games Federation president Louise Martin,” Rijiju said.
“We had a fruitful discussion today and I appreciate that the CGF has taken serious note of the issue. We will need a few more rounds of discussions, but I am happy with the fact that we have made a positive start,” the minister added.
The meeting between the two parties was agreed upon following IOA’s proposal to the Sports Ministry in July, to boycott the Games over shooting’s exclusion.
Shooting has always been one of India’s top medal contributors in the CWG. The discipline yielded 16 medals, including seven gold, at the last edition in Gold Coast.
For the first time since 1974, the sport has been excluded from the Games roster.
The CGF, on its part, said following Thursday’s meeting, they were hopeful of India participating in 2022 CWG.
“The CGF appreciates the concerns expressed by India about the non-inclusion of shooting as a competitive event at Birmingham 2022 and we are committed to working together for finding a solution to this,” the CGF said in a statement.
“Following our discussions, the CGF are increasingly hopeful that the athletes of India will compete at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
“We acknowledge and respect that this decision will ultimately be taken by the sports community of India but have been delighted with the opportunity to discuss the refreshed vision of the Commonwealth Sport Movement and India’s important role in achieving it,” it added.
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