— Published 22 June 2021

Indians challenge sanitary rules

tokyo 2020

The Tokyo Games are still a month away from opening (D-31), but the sanitary measures decided by the Japanese organisers are already causing controversy. The new rules involved were announced by the organising committee and concern 11 countries, including Pakistan, India and the UK. They notably foresee that athletes from these countries, the most affected by the virus, will be isolated from the other delegations in the village during the first three days. According to NHK, the Indian National Olympic Committee has formally protested to the Japanese against these restrictions. It considers them “unfair”. The Indian body sent an official letter to the organising committee last Saturday, in which it contested the obligation for athletes to stay in the village only five days before their events, but spending the first three days in isolation. “Three days will be wasted for isolation purposes, so there will be no time left for training,” the Indian Olympic Committee says in its letter, insisting that these last few days are “the time when athletes need to get closer to their functioning mode to reach their peak.” The letter also states that the sanitary rules are likely to have a negative impact on the dietary plan of Indian athletes and affect their performance. Narinder Batra, the president of the Indian Olympic Committee, said the Japanese organisers’ health measures would be discriminatory and against the Olympic spirit.