CWG needs sports star, not actors

Games ambassador: Kalmadi rejects BJP demand

That is the question Commonwealth Games organising committee chairman and Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president Suresh Kalmadi seemed to throw at all those, including BJP leader and IOA vice-president Vijay Malhotra, who had suggested that Amitabh Bachchan be made the Games’ brand ambassador.
Pushing for a sporting icon as the brand ambassador, Kalmadi, a Congress MP, seemed eager to distance himself from the ongoing Congress-BJP feud surrounding Bachchan’s decision to be a brand ambassador of Narendra Modi-ruled Gujarat and his presence at a government function in Congress-ruled Maharashtra.
Rejecting the proposal formally made by Malhotra for Big B as the brand ambassador, Kalmadi said on Tuesday, “Personally, I would like younger sporting icons as brand ambassadors not Bollywood stars.”

“Amitabh Bachchan will not be the brand ambassador for Commonwealth Games,” Kalmadi said, but quickly added, “That does not mean I am against Bachchan.” Kalmadi also added that the Games organising committee, the body authorised to decide on a brand ambassador, had not yet put its mind on the issue.
However, Malhotra was quick to respond to Kalmadi, and said, “What does he mean by younger sporting icons? He should look at the age of the people connected with the Games, starting from the prime minister, the sports minister, the Delhi chief minister, the Union urban development minister, the Lt Governor of Delhi to himself. What has age to do with the appointment of the brand ambassadors?”

The Games brand ambassador issue has come up even as the Congress and the BJP are trading charges and countercharges on Bachchan, who in turn has alluded to the probability of a “pattern” behind all this happening involving his family.
Congress upped the ante on Monday with party spokesman Manish Tiwari asking, “It is high time that Mr Amitabh Bachchan comes out and very strongly tell this country as to where does he stand on the question of Mr Narendra Modi and his government’s complicity in the Gujarat riots.” Bachchan is yet to reply.
DH News Service

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