Coronavirus Outbreak: Bajrang Punia to donate six months salary, calls for postponement of Tokyo Olympics 2020

Bajrang Punia is one of India's medal contenders at the Games, which are under doubt due to the coronavirus, which has claimed more than 15000 lives and infected more than 3,00,000 people worldwide.

Press Trust of India March 23, 2020 21:41:48 IST
Coronavirus Outbreak: Bajrang Punia to donate six months salary, calls for postponement of Tokyo Olympics 2020

New Delhi: Star wrestler Bajrang Punia on Monday decided to donate his six months salary towards fight against COVID-19 pandemic and called for postponement of Tokyo Olympics, saying the mega event will lose sheen if it goes ahead in the absence of nations who have already pulled out.

 <span class=Coronavirus Outbreak Bajrang Punia to donate six months salary calls for postponement of Tokyo Olympics 2020" width="380" height="285" />

File image of Bajrang Punia. Image: WFI

The 25-year-old Bajrang is one of India's medal contenders at the Games, which are under doubt due to the coronavirus , which has claimed more than 15000 lives and infected more than 3,00,000 people worldwide.

Bajrang, the 2019 World Championship bronze medallist, works with the Railways as an officer on special duty (OSD).

"I have decided to donate my six months salary," Bajrang tweeted and immediately earned praise from Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju, who said it was a laudable effort.

Talking to PTI, Bajrang said, "Before Olympics we have to fight coronavirus . If situation does not improve, and continues for 2-3 months, it will be perfectly alright to postpone the Olympics."

"If it is held with coronavirus continuing to wreak havoc, a lot of nations will not send their athletes. Already Canada and Australia have said they won't send their athletes. What's the point then.

"So it is not just India's problem, it's a global issue, which needs to be tackled first," he added.

Bajrang is training at an apartment in Sonepat while his coach Shako Bentinidis has left for Georgia.

India's foreign coach for women wrestlers Andrew Cook has also left for the US a few days ago.

The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) says it will decide the country's participation in about four weeks' time.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is under tremendous pressure to postpone the Games.

Meanwhile, Vinesh Phogat , another Indian medal contender at the Games, says she has been training hard and it does not matter what she feels about the postponement of the Games.

"I am at my home and training has been good so far. Whatever I say, does not matter," she said.

Updated Date:

also read

Mumbai: Amid COVID-19 surge, BMC to release asymptomatic patients to ensure beds for ‘needy’
India

Mumbai: Amid COVID-19 surge, BMC to release asymptomatic patients to ensure beds for ‘needy’

The city's civic body described the "needy" patient as those with "mild or serious symptoms or a COVID-19 patient with comorbidities"

A year since COVID-19 outbreak, Haitians await vaccines amid surging violence, political instability
World

A year since COVID-19 outbreak, Haitians await vaccines amid surging violence, political instability

Haiti’s lack of vaccines comes as it reports more than 12,700 cases and 250 deaths, numbers that experts believe are underreported. Perceptions also remain a big challenge. While face masks remain mandatory at Haiti businesses, airport closures and curfews have long since been lifted, and other precautions are rare.

Cuban cooks take to Facebook to share ingenious culinary creations in wake of food shortage due to COVID-19 pandemic
World

Cuban cooks take to Facebook to share ingenious culinary creations in wake of food shortage due to COVID-19 pandemic

A number of Cubans, with more ingenuity than resources, help their compatriots cope with shortages exacerbated by the new coronavirus pandemic with Facebook posts of culinary creations designed around what they’re actually likely to find at the market or with government rations.