IOA lauds Tendulkar's nomination to Rajya Sabha

New Delhi: Indian Olympic Association (IOA) acting president Vijay Kumar Malhotra on Friday lauded the government's decision to nominate cricket maestro Sachin Tendulkar to a Rajya Sabha seat.

Malhotra said the IOA is happy that its long-standing demand to include sportspersons in the Upper House has been accepted.

"This is another feather in Sachin's cap as he has become the first sportsperson to be nominated to Rajya Sabha," Malhotra said in a statement.

"IOA is happy that its long standing demand to have sportsperson nominated to Rajya Sabha has been accepted. We hope this will become a rule than exception," he added.

Malhotra said the nomination is a step towards helping sportspersons to play a greater role in unifying the country by their stellar performances and deserve recognition by the state.

Malhotra also welcomed the election of former hockey captain Dilip Tirkey to Rajya Sabha.

"I hope that nomination and elections of these sporting icons will encourage the young sportspersons to give their best for the country, especially during the London Olympics," he said.

Malhotra also said that the IOA has also taken a big step recognising sportspersons by appointing three-time Olympian Ajitpal Singh as chef de mission for the upcoming London Games.

"This is the first time that a sportsperson will lead the Indian contingent in Olympics," said Malhotra. (IANS)