It is indeed a matter of great joy and proud for all of us to see Indian Badminton stars to new heights at London Olympic Games 2012 where we sent the largest contingent, India has ever sent to Olympic Games. Our players have shown their wonderful winning spirit in the Olympics to bring pride to the nation.
Saina Nehwal won a bronze medal in women’s singles and has become the first Indian to win a medal in Badminton in the Olympics. P. Kashyap played his heart out and became the first Indian male shuttler to reach the quarterfinals where he lost to world No. 2 Lee Chong Wei. Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa have played their best but could not qualify for the quarter-finals despite beating Singapore pair. There was apparently match-throwing foul play by the teams in their group which resulted early ouster of the Indian pair. India’s appeal to a re-look at the match was rejected. In the mixed doubles, Diju-Gutta pair also played their best.
I can proudly say that it is the best performance by Indian Badminton players in terms of medals and overall performance at any Olympics. In line with our decision, cash award of Rs. 25.00 lakhs shall be given to Saina Nehwal for winning bronze medal in the Olympics. Further, as a token of appreciation to the sincere and hard work of P. Gopichand, Chief National Coach, it has been decided to give him cash award of Rs. 10.00 lakhs.
I am quite confident that the Executive Committee and the Members of the Association are committed to promoter the game of Badminton in the country. We may recall, when the existing Executive Committee took over the charge, BAI was at a crossroad of destiny for its survival and growth. It was beset with huge liabilities, prize money payable to players, statutory dues, pending accounts, compliances and regulatory requirements, known to all of us. Things and times have changed positively. Credit goes to Office Bearers, Members, Executives, Sponsors and all stakeholders for such a significant turnaround of Badminton in the country.
Our aim is to become the BEST in the world and India should be world-wide known as one of the best Badminton Countries. Of course, we can do it.If you have any suggestions, please do write to me.
With best wishes,
Dr. Akhilesh Das Gupta