Track legend P T Usha has shot off a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi protesting against the decision of School Games Federation of India to organise the athletic events for boys and girls separately.
In her letter, Usha cited the SGFI calendar, showing that athletic events for boys and girls will be held separately in the second week of January 2016 and fourth week of December this year in Nasik and Pune respectively.
SGFI is the national apex body for organising various sports and games among all Indian schools.
“It is indeed shocking news to the Indian sports community,” she said.
Whatever be the reason behind the decision, “it is totally undemocratic and condemnable to the maximum extent possible.”
“When the world is crying loudly against gender discrimination and for equality among men and women, this attitude of SGFI cannot be justified at any cost,” the sprint queen said in her letter.
“Separate competitions for boys and girls or men and women were held only in very olden days,” she said.
Noting that at present International Association of Athletic Federation and Athletic Federation of India are organising combined events for men and women at the same time and the same venue with a view to help women, to better their performance, Usha said SGFI’s decision is a violation of human rights.
“It is also against the international Olympic Charter, which our country signed a century before,” said Usha, who is also a former National Athletic Coach.
Usha asked the PM to personally look into the matter and initiate necessary instructions to SGFI to re consider their decision and to organize the national school’s athletic championship together for boys and girls on the same dates and same venues.