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Commercial interests clearly rule the IOC and not just sports: Digvijay Singh Deo

Updated: February 13, 2013, 5:07 PM IST
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Commercial interests clearly rule the IOC and not just sports: Digvijay Singh Deo
Digvijay Singh Deo joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on wrestling being dropped as an Olympic sport.

CNN-IBN's Deputy editor (sports) Digvijay Singh Deo joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on wrestling being dropped as an Olympic sport.

Q. Wrestling was gaining popularity in India with the recent success of Sushil Kumar and Yogeshwar, with such news coming how do you thing young wrestlers will react to this? Asked by: Prarthana Hazarika

A. Yes you have nailed it...Rio will be the last time Yogeshwar and Sushil will probably turn up at an Olympics...if Wrestling goes then its the likes of Amit Kumar who will be affected..he was 18 when he qualified for London 2012...2020 he would have been in his peak...many like him will bear the brunt if Wrestling is out of the Olympic program.

Q. India's medal tally will now obviously drop !!! your say? Asked by: sekar

A. 2020 is a long way off...how do you know...in 2004 did we ever imagine winning a Gold in Beijing and 6 medals in London..for Rio you mar cross 10 now...so yes, if wrestling goes you may lose a couple of meals but it will be compensated by other sports pitching in.

Q. IOC and Commonwealth Games Federation has banned India from participating. What are chances of lifting the ban? Asked by: Akanksha Jain

A. This has nothing to do with the wrestling decision but let me give the background. IOA has been suspended by the IOC. Now IOC is a body comprising 115 members. A national Olympic committee like IOA is not a member of the IOC. They are members of Association of National Olympic Committees ANOC. India's representative in the IOC is Randhir Singh. This decision to remove wrestling is not India specific. Indian Wrestling does not have that clout internationally. Russians and the former Soviet Union states control World wrestling even though the President is from Switzerland. Now obviously the international federation didn't believe their sport would go, they didn't do any lobbying. While Modern pentathlon lobbied like mad to stay in the program for 2020..Wrestling didn't and so went out in the vote..Also the vote happened in the IOC Executive Board which comprises 15 members.

Q. Can wrestlers approach any international body seeking justice? Asked by: simon

A. No...as I said the IOC is a private body. If you want to agree with their idea great..or else you are free not to send a team to the Olympics!!! IOC frankly is a 115 member body which control sports in the world...they are in fact more powerful than the United Nations in my opinion..why would every major country spend billions to host an Olympic games...yet every 4 years you have massive amount spents on bidding alone..that's how powerful the Olympic Brand is.

Q. Sir, in the current scenario when the world contemplates on adding games like cricket to the Olympics, why does the IOA decide to do away with existing and popular games like wrestling? Asked by: Rishabh Bhargava

A. IOC...not IOA...the other sports who were facing the axe were Hockey, Taekwondo and Modern Pentathlon. Well the IOC decision has been slammed around the world. Have been tracking the reports since last night. Wrestling is a sport that has been around since the ancient Olympics. Clearly by getting rid of Wrestling the IOC has opened itself up for criticism. Commercial interests clearly rule the IOC and not Sports.

Q. What a shocker for upcoming wrestlers. On what basis are they dropping wrestling? Asked by: rahul

A. Just because a few people decided it was dropped!

Q. Can this be revoked? Asked by: Sandeep

A. This goes down to a very tricky vote with other sports also involved...if it survives the vote then Wrestling will be there in 2020 or else it will have to try again in 2017 to get on the program for 2024.

First Published: February 13, 2013, 5:07 PM IST
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