IOA chief Narinder Batra says vaccination of Olympic-bound athletes our top priority

Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president Narinder Batra on Friday said that vaccination of the Olympic-bound athletes is the topmost priority of the federation. Batra is confident that a proper plan will be charted “very soon” to put the thought into action.

“We are having discussions with all concerned departments including Health Ministry, Sports Ministry and NADA. We are very much on track and we hope very soon will come up with a proper plan for it,” Batra told ANI. When asked about the timeline he said, “As of now, discussions are on. Once everything is fine-tuned will let you know. As of now, I can only say that vaccination of our athletes is our topmost priority and we are working on it with seriousness.”

Earlier, Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju had also said that Olympic-bound athletes will be given priority in the vaccination.

The Japanese government is “fully focused” on hosting the Tokyo Olympics this summer, the organisers said on Friday. The Tokyo Olympics were postponed last year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The showpiece event is now scheduled to be held from July 23 to August 8, 2021, while the Paralympics will take place from August 24 to September 5, 2021.

In a statement, the organisers said that Japan Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga had expressed to them his determination to hold the Games, CNN reported.

“All our delivery partners including the national government, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee, the IOC and the IPC are fully focused on hosting the Games this summer. We hope that daily life can return to normal as soon as possible, and we will continue to make every effort to prepare for a safe and secure Games,” the statement read, as quoted by CNN.

In November last year, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach had promised the athletes that they will have an unforgettable experience at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

“You will never ever forget these moments in the Olympic Village in all your life. And with the conditions our Japanese friends are offering here, the experience will be even more fantastic. This is the place to be nine months from now,” Bach had said.