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Tamil Nadu refuses to host meet
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 22 - 02 - 2013

NEW DELHI — The chief minister of an Indian state scheduled to host the Asian Athletics Championships is refusing to organize the July meet because of the participation of Sri Lankan athletes.
Jayaram Jayalalithaa, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, said in a statement Thursday that staging the July 3-7 meet in the state capital Chennai would anger people in her province because of the alleged atrocities against the ethnic Tamil minority during the civil war in Sri Lanka. “Since there has been no favorable response from the Asian Athletics Association, my government will at no cost accept holding the event in which Sri Lanka is also participating in Tamil Nadu,” she said in the statement. “Tamils also will never accept it.”
Jayalalitha said the Indian government and sports officials had been kept in the loop regarding the state's objections.
“It had been requested that they (AAA) update us on the follow-up action with copies of the letter sent to secretaries of union external affairs and sports ministries, but there has been no information from the association so far,” she said.
On Wednesday, Jayalalitha slammed the Sri Lankan government for the alleged killing by its army of the 12-year-old son of former militant leader Velupillai Prabhakaran after TV images shown in Britain suggest the boy was not killed in crossfire as presumed. The images showed him in the custody of Sri Lankan soldiers before he was killed.
Banned athletes train at govt center
The Sports Authority of India denies claims it is offering coaching to two banned athletes, while it adheres to a court order allowing them to train at a prominent sports center.
Local media have reported that women's 400-meter runners Ashwini Akkunji and Mandeep Kaur, who are serving two-year bans for doping, are being coached in the northern city of Patiala.
SAI director general Gopal Krishna was quoted by The Hindu newspaper Thursday as saying that the authority does not support suspended athletes, but that it “cannot stop athletes from utilizing the facilities”. — Agencies


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