India Gets PT Usha As First Female IOA President

New Delhi: Legendary sprinter PT Usha was elected as the new president of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA). She is the first female to hold the office in its 95-year-long history.

Usha, affectionately known as the “Payyoli Express,” will be the first Olympian and international medallist to lead the national Olympic committee.

Notably, the 58-year-old multiple medallist at the Asian Games was the sole applicant for the IOA presidency.

Former Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju, congratulated PT Usha on her election. “Congratulations to legendary Golden Girl, Smt. P T Usha on being elected as the President of Indian Olympic Association. I also congratulate all the sporting heroes of our country on becoming the office bearers of the prestigious IOA! Nation is proud of them!,” tweeted Rijiju.

Usha had earlier declared that she would be nominating herself for the position.

“With the warm support of my fellow athletes and National Federations, I am humbled and honoured to accept and file for the nomination of the president of IOA!” she had tweeted on Saturday.

The post from Rijiju was also retweeted by the Sports Authority of India (SAI).

One of the best athletes to ever represent India is the legendary sprinter Usha, who boasts four gold and seven silver medals from the Asian Games. In the women’s 400-meter hurdles event at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, she came up only 1/100th of a second short of a podium finish. Her time of 55.42s in LA continues to be the national record.

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