Sports minister Kiren Rijiju, reacting to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA)’s suggestion to boycott 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games for excluding shooting, said, “It’s too early to make a decision of such magnitude”.
The decision to axe shooting from the Commonwealth Games was made by the Birmingham Organising Committee citing logistical issues.
The decision triggered sharp reactions from the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and the national shooting federation (NRAI).
In an interview, Rijiu said, “IOA officials met me and apprised me about the ongoing issues in the 2022 Commonwealth Games, (CWG) where shooting event has been dropped.”
“The possibility of India’s boycott was also raised before me,” he added.
“I told them to speak to the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) officials and the organising committee of the Birmingham Games and apprise them about our deep concerns,” he added.
“If the decision is not reviewed, we will see but the call for a boycott at this point of time is too early,” Rijiju further added.
He further emphasised that boycott is not the solution.
“I will not give an opinion till I get the final outcome from the meeting between IOA and CGF officials,” the sports minister added.
Since 1966, shooting has been a part of every Commonwealth Games (CWG) with the exception of Edinburgh 1970.
The CGF, however, in its executive board meeting in June recommended the to drop shooting and include three new sports.