Hockey debacle: BJP blames government

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{image-indian hockey_12032008.jpg www.oneindia.com}New Delhi, Mar 12 : The Bharatiya Janata Party today demanded Sports Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar's resignation and put the blame on the government for the unceremonious exit of Indian hockey team from the upcoming Beijing Olympic.

"He (Aiyar) is the first minister who is anti-sports. He must resign," BJP Parliamentary Party leader V K Malhotra said during a discussion on the Union Budget 2008-09 in the Lok Sabha. He lashed out at Finance Minister P Chidambaram for allocating "mere Rs three crore" in the Budget for sports-related activities.

Malhotra decried government's decision on shifting Hockey to non-priority 'B' category from being a priority game, which implied that import of hockey equipment would become costlier.

"How are we supposed to compete during the coming Commonwealth Games if this the state of affairs today?" he asked and pointed out that while a lot was being done to promote cricket, the national sport is in a pitiable condition today.

Indian hockey team had to make unceremonious exit from the Olympics after losing their pre-qualifying matches.

ANI

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