Uncertainty is looming over the vaccination of Covid-19 for athletes hoping for the Olympics, said Indian Olympic Association (IOA) Secretary-General Rajiv Mehta. Although it is five months before the Tokyo Olympics, there is no word on how Japanese-linked athletes would be vaccinated.
“It is unclear when the Olympic hopes will be vaccinated against the contagious virus. So far, shooters, boxers, men’s and women’s hockey teams, athletes and wrestlers have reached quota places for the rescheduled Olympics. Held from July 23 to August 8 in Japan “Mehta said in a letter sent to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and available from IANS.
To speed up the vaccination process, Mehta asked the health ministry to take stock of the situation and give two doses of Covid-19 vaccination to athletes related to the Olympics.
“As athletes and officials are trained and stay in different locations, the IOA, in coordination with the relevant National Sports Federations (NSF), will vaccinate. We look forward to your kind consideration of our request and direct the relevant department to enable the athletes and officials to vaccinate in time before they leave for Japan, “he said in his two-page letter.
According to the IOA Secretary General, discussions with the Ministry of Health are ongoing, but it is uncertain when the vaccination process for athletes will begin.
“There are five months left until the Tokyo Olympics, requiring priority double vaccination for athletes as well as officials. Therefore, we ask your good services to consider the vaccine for the Indian contingent and you can arrange to issue the necessary guidance in this regard.” said Mehta in his letter.
Sports Minister Kiren Ridgeu said last week: “Olympic athletes and officials are on the priority list, but the health ministry will decide the general details. All athletes will be vaccinated before they go to the Olympics.”
Uncertainty is also looming over the Olympics, as many countries are still battling a wave of the deadly Covid virus, and there is opposition to the mega event from Japan.
The indication for vaccination in India started last month with a focus on healthcare and first-line workers.