Reprieve for Goa; IOA reduces penalty for delay in hosting nationals

Some relief for Goa in penalties for delay in hosting National Games

The Indian Olympics Association (IOA) has reduced the penalty imposed on the Goa government for repeatedly missing the deadline for hosting the 36th National Games by almost ₹4 crore, the State Sports Minister Manohar Ajgaonkar has informed the Legislative Assembly.

The Minister has stated that following the requests made by the State Government to negotiate the fine of ₹10 crore, the IOA had on July 1 conveyed through a letter that the State will have to pay ₹6 crore as “additional hosting fees”.

Earlier in April, the IOA had asked Goa to pay the penalty of ₹10 crore for repeatedly missing the deadline for hosting the 36th National Games.

Goa had expressed its inability to host the event in March-April this year owing to the general elections.

The Goa Government had cited security and volunteer related issues during the elections as reasons for postponing the much-delayed National Games, which were originally planned for 2016 but since have been rescheduled several times.

The Minister also informed the House that the state government has conveyed to the IOA its intent to host these Games in November this year.

“The State Government has conveyed to the IOA its intent to host the 36th National Games in November 2019 and preparations for hosting the event is going on in that direction,” Ajgaonkar said while responding to two different questions tabled by Congress MLA Ravi Naik and BJP MLA Francis Silveira.

The Minister also said that the government has completed all the necessary arrangements and would ensure that all the facilities are in place for the conduct of these Games.

According to Ajgaonkar, the Games were initially scheduled to be hosted in March-April 2019.

“However, on account of the parliamentary elections, by-elections to the state Assembly, the term-end examinations of higher secondary and college students, the government decided to postpone the National Games to October-November 2019,” the minister said.

After the Goa edition, which was earlier to be held in November last year, the IOA has already decided to allot the next editions to Chhattisgarh, Uttarakhand and Meghalaya.