Monday, August 4, 2008

Olympics - The time is ours

Olympics 2008 - We need to do it


Its June 2008, and guess what, its time for another Olympics. So, its time for each of 1.1 billion of Indians to get humiliated again. Suddenly, I have lost my appetite. Lets start looking at it with some statistics. Below you will find some nations, their populations, GDPs & the no of medals they have won in 2004 Olympics. I would suggest faint hearted to abstain, its not all that pretty.

Yes, Australia has 1/50th of India population, almost half GDP and they have 50 times the no of medals we got. One can argue that, its a rich country and they have resources to spare. So lets take the example of Lithuania, GDP of 59 billion. They got 3 times the no of medals we got.

Can we continuing taking this insult, and still our bureaucracy can complacently relax, or its time for us to uproar. India as a country has seen multiple revolutions. We saw the independence revolution, cultural revolution and IT revolution. Now, its time for another revolution. The great Indian Sporting Revolution.

Its been 25 years since India won the Cricket World Cup and since then every other sport has been treated as a step child. Earlier, where hockey was India’s passion, now has shrunk to a niche sport. The media treats every cricketer as a royal knight, whereas other sportsmen are lucky to get a mention in the news, It does’t recognize their achievements, however controversies are never left alone. When it comes to Sania Mirza, its her shorts not her shots which grab the headlines. I don’t have anything against Cricket. In fact, I am a die hard fan. However, Its disappointing & painful to see the ignorance bestowed upon other sports.

I fail to understand while we have produced brilliant, hard working, successful individuals in all career paths, but have failed miserably to replicate that success in sports. Its an embarrassing that, a country like Slovakia with a population of 5 million, 1/200th of that of India, has won 6 times the no of medals we have won.

If we want to create sporting glory in India, we need a strong leader at the top who realizes the significance of sporting achievements in the global arena. The significance and the impact sports makes in the day to day lives in industrialist nations should be a benchmark for us to emulate. Once we have the political & bureaucratic will, I don™t think there will be any looking back. History has been the proof to the fact that economic progress brings in sporting achievements for societies. India is witnessing mind boggling economic growth, so it’s the matter of time before we become a sporting power too. Of course, there is a disclaimer i.e. provided the government & media supports our sporting Heros.

So lets wake up to a new beginning. Come 8th August, 2008 and we will begin an era of Indian dominance in sports.

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