National cyclists made to sleep on floor with no hot water and storage facilities for bikes ahead of championships in Jaipur

Cyclists from various parts of India slept on the floor under cold conditions in Rajasthan, with no hot water and no storage facilities for their bikes before the National Cycling Championship, which begins on Wednesday in Jaipur.

According to reports, the entire Rajasthan men's team of 30 have been put up in a hall — that is about 30 x 20 feet — below the velodrome stands. Most of the cyclists who have been housed there have been given mattresses to be put on the floor with the temperature dipping to well below 10 degrees Celsius.

Speaking to ANI, Cycling Association President S Periwal on reports of lack of facilities said, "Cyclists were provided accommodation in hotels. Their cycles cost between Rs 5-9 lakh. Hotels don't allow cycles and cyclists don't want to leave cycles anywhere. Therefore, they prefer to stay in rooms near velodrome."

Bhagirath Vadu, a Rajasthan Cycling Team member said, "The facilities here are good. We get similar facilities elsewhere too. We don't want to stay at hotels as they do not allow to keep the cycles inside. Our equipment is really expensive."

The organisers of the newly-formed Rajasthan Cycling Association said that's all they could've done.

For the first time, three national cycling championships are being held in Jaipur from 30 January. It has been further reported that the security establishment of the state had earlier asked the Rajasthan team to vacate the velodrome at the SMS stadium on 24, 25 and 26 January for the Republic Day parade. The Maharashtra men's team has been housed in a smaller hall since there are only 22 members.

While the international players have been kept in hotels, departmental teams like Services and Railways, however, have arranged for their own accommodation. “We are not used to this cold and we do not even get warm water to bath," a Maharashtra cyclist was quoted by TOI.

More than 600 players from 25 states are expected to participate in the championships.

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Updated Date: Jan 30, 2019 14:44:26 IST

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