Jalandhar: Supporting international wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt, SAD leader and former Indian Hockey team skipper Pargat Singh on Sunday opposed the move of nominating Bollywood superstar Salman Khan as the ‘Goodwill Ambassador’ of India in the Rio Olympics 2016. Yogeshwar Dutt, the 2012 London Olympics bronze medalist was opposing Salman’s name as the Goodwill Ambassador on social media, leading to nationwide debate. Yogeshwar has been criticizing the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) decision and demanded that a leading sports star should have been considered to lead the Indian contingent in Rio de Janeiro.
At his hometown, the Jalandhar Cantonment MLA Pargat said that it was wrong to nominate a celebrity like Salman Khan as the Goodwill Ambassador. “The IOA could have nominated ace Indian athlete Milkha Singh, cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, Mahender Singh Dhoni or Olympian Balbir Singh for leading the Indian contingent. When we have so many sports stars, why should the IOA consider a Bollywood actor as the ambassador? Bringing bollywood stars for opening and closing ceremonies in such events was fine but not as Goodwill Ambassadors” he emphasised. Pargat also said that even he could have been considered as the Goodwill Ambassador for the Rio Olympics 2016. “Any person associated with sports was fine but one who has nothing to do with games, how can he be appointed.
Like an army personnel has the experience of his job, so does a sports star knows his sport. Why should the IOA sideline renowned sports stars for this responsibility”, he said. It is pertinent to mention here that international wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt was the first one to oppose Salman’s name as the ambassador after the IOA announced his name. Yogeshwar ended up mentioning on social media site Twitter that “Sport persons like PT Usha and Milkha Singh worked hard for the country in difficult times. But what has this ‘ambassador’ (Salman Khan) done in sports?” his tweet read.
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