Ace sprinter Hima Das managed to extend her visa, which was to expire on Tuesday, and would be training in the Czech Republic along with many other Indian athletes giving the Inter-State meet a miss. Numerous Indian athletes would be participating in IAAF-sanctioned Brno Grand Prix in Czech.
The inter-state athletics meet has been scheduled from August 27 to 30 in Lucknow, but keeping an eye on the World Athletic Championships scheduled from September 27 to October 6 in Doha, many athletes have decided to take part in the Brno Grand Prix on August 28 and vie for qualifying for the Championships.
Das had to wait till the last moment to get her visa extended before the Indian embassy granted. Apart from her, 400 metres relay team and shot putter Tejinder Pal Singh Toor has also got it extended.
"The news is that Schengen Visa is extended and the uncertainty over their participation in the inter-state meet, which is the final selection trial for World Championships in Sep-Oct is over," said an AFI, reported TOI.
"The athletes were about to leave for India on Tuesday after the expiry of their visas. But after the AFI requested an extension, all the athletes were granted an extension to train there. Normally in case of Schengen visas, the athletes have to come back and re-apply but we are thankful to the Indian embassy who assisted the athletes to get the extension," the source added.
Not only them but many others are giving the Inter-State Meet a miss, which includes the likes of runners Mohd. Anas Yahya, Noah Nirmal Tom, Amoj Jacob, Mohan Kumar Raja, Dharun Ayyasamy, Jeevan Karekoppa Suresh and Jabir Madari Palliyalil among men.
Among women, the 400m and 4x400 relay group, and Tajinder, three javelin throwers Vipin Kasana, Shivpal Singh, and Annu Rani wouldn’t also not participate, who are currently in Europe.
"Instead of participating in the inter-state meet, the whole group will now take part in the respective IAAF-sanctioned events and will head directly to Doha," the source further added.