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Indian sports minister hopes to lift IOC ban

Dec 5, 2012, 12:34 PM EST

AP Photo/Paul Sancya AP Photo/Paul Sancya

The morning after having the Indian Olympic Association suspended by the IOC because it failed to comply with the Olympic charter, Indian sports minister Jitendra Singh is prepared to do whatever he can to ensure that the ban is lifted and the country’s athletes can compete in the Games.

Singh told reporters Wednesday that he met with IOA officials earlier this week to warn them about the ban, and to have them amend their constitution to include government guidelines on age and tenure limitations for committee members.

“Today, instead of playing the blame game, the need is to have a future strategy,” Singh said. “I will once again talk to the IOC and write to them that let’s talk about solving this problem for the future of Indian sportspersons. The government will take every step and we are willing to mediate.”

The ban was announced Tuesday after the IOA allowed Lalit Bhanot, a sports official who had spent eleven months in custody for corruption charges stemming from the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, to run unopposed for secretary-general of the country’s Olympic Committee.

London marked the  most successful Games in history for India, which won six medals including two silver and four bronze. India has won eleven medals in field hockey in Olympic history, including eight gold.

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