The allegations have started being flung even before the 37th National Games are to be officially declared open. And who you may ask is doing it? None other than the politicians.
Sports and politics are not two sides of the same coin and yet practitioners of the latter always like to be tied up with the former, purely with an eye on votes.
Politicians seeking meetings with the Chief Minister to plead for the cause of sportspeople has become the trend off late, with one politician not meeting him just once but twice.
In the first instance, the facts and figures were available on the net to all and yet, the politician, perhaps assuming the Chief Minister is a simple man, attempted to raise an issue where there was none and if anything tried to place bad over good. It did not work because the Chief Minister proved he was a man who thinks before he reacts.
70:30 FORMULA PAINS
The issue of Goan and non-Goan was this time raised by the Sports Minister, proffering a notification that stipulated a 70:30 formula to select players to represent Goa for the 37th National Games. The formula was conceived, primarily to boost Goa’s medal tally as hosts are normally expected to perform quite well, and Goa’s could be a shameful performance.
Yet, bad performances arise when sports is sidelined and priorities are skewed.
Casting aspersions of corruption without proof is something expected from educated illiterates but definitely not from individuals who masquerade as street smart. Listening to one side of the story and giving it a cover is the style of politicians.
There can be many reasons why certain players were overlooked in favour of a few from outside the state but when one hurls stones of corruption, one should be careful because the same stones could one day bounce back. That is the way bad shuttles play in sport.
Boxers from Goa – both women and men – have been crying over how they have been dropped in favour of outstation players and that too in proportions of 50:50 and even less and yet no one has raised their voices.
If the 70:30 formula can smell of corruption, what should 50:50 or 40:60 stink of? For a politician it would not really matter because at the end of the day – and it now is a fact – it is the vote that counts and how it is obtained is what is most important. Talk can be forgotten but pain prevails.
Instead of trying to defend the indefensible or justify stupidity, politicians should see the sores amongst themselves and start correction from within.
QUESTIONS THAT NEED ANSWERS
Here are a few questions that need to be studied and answered:
How did the daughter of the sports minister represent the state in three sports disciplines during his tenure?
If the intent is genuine, why is it that most sportspeople had to wait till a month before the start of the National Games for funds to start preparing?
Is one month good enough time to get ready for a top performance?
Why is the ground in Benaulim or the stadium in Sawalvaddo in Pernem also prepared for the same purpose not being used?
No one is asking these questions, obviously because it suits all when they start scratching each other’s backs.
LEARN WHEN TO REACT
Such pronouncements by politicians are a testimony that voters have lost their worthiness; that they are purchasable commodities or commodities that are decrepit.
No doubt, there are times when associations go beyond their briefs but those are the times when politicians look the other way as in this case with the Goa Amateur Boxing Association (GABA).
Actually, this is not the first time that GABA has been playing bad. If they are repeating it is because they got away the last time and the time before that and that it is becoming a part of their story that goes unchecked.
Gibran once wrote: “A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely more than much knowledge that is idle.” Our politicians could start by learning to decide when to react.