Tokyo Paralympics: Mariyappan Thangavelu in isolation. Tek Chand named India’s flag-bearer Follow Live Updates – Javelin thrower Tek Chand has been named as India’s flag-bearer at the Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony after Mariyappan Thangavelu was quarantined following close contact with a COVID-19 positive person during their flight to Tokyo.
And the day has arrived folks! Its time for #Paralympics
that start from today with Opening ceremony scheduled at 1630 hrs IST.
54 🇮🇳 athletes (including 14 Women) participating in 9 sporting disciplines | Events start from tomorrow
Live on Eurosport & DD Sports. pic.twitter.com/I7D4qN2Uxn
— India_AllSports (@India_AllSports) August 24, 2021
Mariyappan, a Rio 2016 Gold medal winner, was the flag bearer for India. However, he and five others of the Indian contingent were quarantined until further notice, as someone near their seats on the flight to Tokyo tested positive for COVID-19.
A senior SAI official confirmed to InsideSport that Mariyappan indeed came in contact with a COVID-19 positive person.
“Mariyappan Thangavelu our Flag Bearer, with 5 others, have been quarantined until further notice, as someone near to their seats on their flight to Tokyo tested COVID+! However, none of them have turned +ve since the past 6days! Tek Chand will now be our Flag Bearer. Pls watch!” Deputy Chef de Mission (CDM) Arhan Bagati tweeted a video.
Gursharan Singh, the secretary-general of the Paralympic Committee of India (PCI), informed that as Mariyappan and other athletes have returned regular negative results for COVID-19, they will be allowed to train for their competitions.
“Instead of Mariyappan our athlete Tek Chand will be the flag bearer. However, Mariyappan and Vinod Kumar although have been found in close contact, are found to be COVID negative since last six days while they are in Village,” said Gursharan Singh in the video.
“They will also be allowed to participate and compete in their respective events. They will also be able to go for the practice, they will have to adhere to strict COVID guidelines which will ensure adhering the same,” he added.
A total of 54 para-athletes from across nine sports disciplines will be featuring in the Paralympic Games. This is India’s biggest ever contingent to Paralympic Games.