The Sports Ministry today offered all Olympians of the country officer grade jobs in the Sports Authority of India a couple of days after champion marksman, Subedar Vijay Kumar, threatened to quit the Army for being denied a promotion.

Sports Minister Ajay Maken said the SAI will post an advertisement on its Web site today calling all Olympians, including past participants, to join the organisation.

“An athlete who has represented India in the Olympics is a world-class athlete and he should be treated accordingly. As a Sports Minister I have always said that all sportspersons who have competed in Olympics should be given officer grade jobs in the Government,” Maken told presspersons today.

“If any of these Government organisations, including the Army, is unable to do so, the SAI will take up the matter.

“The SAI will be coming up with an ad on its Web site wherein we will invite all Olympians to join SAI as Group B officers, and all such Olympians who have won medals will automatically be promoted as Group A officers,” he added.

Soon after the shooter won a silver medal in the 25m rapid fire pistol event in the London Olympics, Kumar had made it clear that he was unhappy with the Army for not giving him a single promotion in the last six years, despite some major sporting achievements at the national and international level.

Sports Minister Ajay Maken was quick to take up the shooter’s cause and has written to Defence Minister A.K. Antony, seeking special consideration for the athlete who has done India proud.

(This article was published on August 8, 2012)
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