Indian Olympic Association ruled out the possibility of the country boycotting next year’s London Olympics, but said that the apex sports body would convey the opposition from certain quarters here on Dow Chemical being one of the sponsors of the Games.
IOA Acting President Vijay Kumar Malhotra told PTI that he would consult his executive committee members and National Sports Federations in a few days and write to the London Games organisers about the concerns expressed in India on Dow Chemical’s association with the mega event.
“There is no question of India boycotting the London Olympics. We are not boycotting Olympic Games and that is very clear on IOA’s part,” he said.
“But we want to express in black and white that there have been opposition in the country with the London Games being associated with Dow Chemical. We have to take account their sentiments,” he said.
Malhotra said he would write to London Games organisers in a few days after taking views from sports fraternity in the country, but refused to say whether IOA would ask them to withdraw Dow Chemical from being a sponsor of the mega event.
“I can’t say now whether we are going to ask them to withdraw Dow Chemical. That’s what we are going to decide. Let us wait for two or three days. But we are not boycotting the London Olympics,” he said.
IOA sources also said that the sports apex body would take views from the Sports Ministry on the issue before writing to the London organisers.
Dow Chemical bought United States firm Union Carbide, whose Bhopal plant in Madhya Pradesh leaked toxic gases in 1984, killing thousands of people in one of the world’s worst industrial accident. Dow will foot the bill of a temporary decorative wrap over London’s Olympic Stadium.
Dismayed by Dow Chemical’s association with the London Olympics, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan and some other Olympians have urged the Indian government to boycott the Games.
Keywords: London Olympics