Monday, November 29, 1999

Sports ministry to take up shooters` harassment in UK

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MR DOING New Delhi, May 16 (IANS) Sports Minister M.S. Gill Sunday asked his officers to take up with British authorities the reported harassment of Indian shooters at the World Cup in England.Gill told his officials to get details of the incident from the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) and the Indian high commission in London.Baljeet Singh Sethi, secretary general of the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI), alleged racism.'They still consider us their slaves. Such incidents have taken place in the past as well during the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester,' Sethi told IANS.The incident took place Saturday at the Southern County Shooting Ranges at Dorset in England when the team bus driver shut the door before an Indian shooter could get in, leaving him stranded at the range.When other shooters in the bus objected, the driver turned back and went to the supervisor of the transport department instead.Indian team manager T. Padmanabhan said the transport department officials also misbehaved with the Indian shooters.Ace trap shooter and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Manavjit Singh Sandhu said a couple of transport officials were very rude with the Indian contingent.Two days back, two Indian female shooters were forced to get off the bus, he alleged.Padmanabhan then wrote to the Indian high commission detailing the harassment of the Indian shooters.A sports ministry official said Gill has directed officers to get 'in touch with the NRAI and the Indian mission in London to know the full details'.

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