The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) will take a decision on whether it should approach the Government for a bid to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games during its Annual General Meeting in New Delhi on December 30.
The 2026 CWG bid and IOA’s proposal to withdraw from the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games for dropping shooting from its roster will be the top agenda of the AGM to be held at its headquarters in the Capital.
IOA Secretary General Rajeev Mehta said it is up to the members to approve or reject the proposal to bid for the hosting rights of 2026 CWG. “On our part, the intent (to bid for 2026 CWG) is a serious one. We need the approval of the General House before going to the government with the proposal to bid for the Games. Let us see what happens,” Mehta said.
Last month, Mehta had announced in the presence of IOA chief Narinder Batra and visiting Commonwealth Games Federation president Louise Martin and CEO David Grevemberg the national sports apex body’s intent to bid for the 2026 CWG.
“We will first take approval from the general assembly of the IOA and then will approach the Government. If the Government allows, we can host the Games,” Mehta had said then.
The host city of the 2026 CWG was initially intended to be selected at the 2019 CGF General Assembly in Kigali, Rwanda, but it was later decided that it will be announced next year.
Several countries, including Australia, Canada and Malaysia, had initially expressed a desire to host the 2026 edition of the CWG but pulled out later. Malaysia is one of the countries reported to mount a bid for the 2026 Games.
Regarding the proposal to withdraw from the 2022 CWG in Birmingham in protest against the dropping of shooting, Batra had maintained that the decision still stands but said the IOA General Assembly will take a final decision.
“We made the proposal (of withdrawal) six months back. We will take into consideration the discussions we had (with the CGF chief and CEO). We will go back to the General Assembly and take a decision,” he had said in the presence of the visiting CGF top brass.
The AGM will also discuss the IOA’s bid to host the prestigious International Olympic Council’s Session in 2023, the country’s preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, the disputes in regards to some National Sports Federations and the contentious draft National Sports Code (2017) for which the ministry has appointed a review committee only to be stayed by the Delhi High court.
The Chef-de-Mission’s report on the performance of Indian athletes in the recently-concluded South Asian Games in Nepal as well as the preparations for the 36th National Games to be held in Goa next year will also be discussed