The South Asian Life & Times - SALT   
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 Indian Athletes @
 London 2012

 

 

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Where are the Indian Athletes from?

  A State wise representation

There are29 states  and 5 Union Territories in India with a total population of 1 billion. The question often raised by critics is how come a country of 1 billion cannot win enough sporting medals in international events. Medals have little to do with the numbers in a country. What matters is the means, facilities, aid and infrastructure available to the potential athletes. Does the money allocated for the athletes by the Centre and State Governments actually reaches them? An estimated 37.2% of Indians live below the country's national poverty line. A 2010 report by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) states that 8 Indian states have more poor than 26 poorest African nations combined which totals to more than 410 million poor in the poorest African countries. One in three malnourished children worldwide are found In India, whilst 42 percent of the nation's children under five years of age are underweight.

Given these statistics, the country should salute the 81 athletes who will be contesting the Gold in London next month. Many among them have braved poverty and lack of facilities to reach where they have through sheer determination and passion for their sport.
SALT presents a brief overview of states represented by the athletes. Some states emerge more sport-friendly than others some excel in one particular sport often as a result of facilities provided by the state.

An important fact that emerges from the state wise breakdown is  that women from the north-eastern states are dominating in sports that are traditionally male-dominated. Three of the four athletes from Manipur are women, so is the lone athlete from Nagaland. Similarly, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh states with unimpressive sex ratios have fielded only women athletes.

 States not represented by athletes at London Olympics: Arunachal Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Jammu & Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, and Tripura. There are no athletes from any of the five Union Territories.

 

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