Kiren Rijiju targets top-10 finish for India at 2028 Olympics

India’s Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said that the Sports Ministry will provide financial aid to every Indian athlete who has competed at the international level.

India’s Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju, on Tuesday, revealed his plans to help India win double-digit medals at 2024 Paris Olympics and a top-ten finish at Los Angeles 2028.

 “It is not possible to create champions overnight. We will go to the Tokyo Olympics with available talent. The next big target is Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028. Recently, I had a meeting with the IOC and the heads of the sports federations. We have set a target that the medal count should be in double digits at Paris 2024 and by 2028, India must be among top ten medal winners at the Olympics,” Rijiju said.

Rijiju, who was in Chennai for the inauguration of a newly-built hockey facility at Sri Ramachandra University, said that the Sports Ministry will provide financial aid to every Indian athlete who has competed at the international level.

 “Every discipline in sports is equal and so is every sportsperson. The sports ministry is not here to impose our measures on the federations, but we are here to provide the facilities and infrastructure. We have taken measures to transfer the prize money to the athletes as soon as they return to the country from the tournament. We are ready to provide financial assistance to any athlete who has represented India,” he said.

Rijiju also revealed plans of building ‘India House’ in Tokyo next year to aid the country’s Olympic preparations.

 “Tokyo 2020 [Olympics] is just 10 months away. We will be providing the best facilities for Indian athletes by building ‘India House’ in Tokyo. Things such as practice time, food and everything the athletes need will be taken care through India House,” he said.

The Sports Minister also pointed out the importance of sports science and medicine which is necessary to excel at the highest level.

“To face the stiff competition at the international level, we need to rely on sports science and technical support. With the help of sports medicine and science, our athletes can reach the level where they can win medals for the country.”

“Through Khelo India, we have expanded the scouting of talent across the country. So far, we have identified 14,000 talented young boys and girls and have provided the facilities in various sports centers across India,” Rijiju said.