Legendary athlete PT Usha elected as first woman president of IOA

Gun Rights

Legendary athlete PT Usha on 10 December was elected as the first woman president of Indian Olympic Association (IOA).

A multiple Asian Games gold medalist and fourth place finisher in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics 400m hurdles final, the 58-year-old Usha was declared elected unopposed for the top post in the polls.

The elections were held under the supervision of Supreme Court-appointed retired SC judge L Nageswara Rao.

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As per details, Usha’s election to the top job marked an end to the long drawn crisis in the faction-ridden IOA, which was warned of a possible suspension by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) if elections are not held this month. However, the polls were originally due to be held in December 2021.

ALSO READ: PT Usha all set to become first woman president of Indian Olympic Association

Usha emerged as the lone candidate for the top post, as nobody was willing to fight against Usha, who was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party in July.

Apart from Usha, Ajay Patel of National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) has been elected unopposed as senior vice-president. Olympic medalist shooter Gagan Narang and Rowing Federation of India president Rajlaxmi Singh Deo have been elected unopposed as vice presidents.

Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWF) president Sahdev Yadav has been elected the treasurer. All India Football Federation (AIFF) president and former goalkeeper Kalyan Chaubey has been elected unopposed as the joint secretary (male).

Alaknanda Ashok of Badminton Association of India (BAI) was elected as joint secretary (female) after emerging winner in a three-way battle. Shalini Thakur Chawla and Suman Kaushik were also in the fray.

Payyoli Express:

Fondly known as the ‘Payyoli Express’, Usha became the first Olympian and first international medallist to head the IOA in its 95-year-old history.

She is also the first sportsperson to have represented the country and also become IOA chief since Maharaja Yadavindra Singh, who played a Test match in 1934. Singh was the third IOA president who held office from 1938 to 1960.

With PTI inputs.

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