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Sarita receives hero welcome at Imphal Airport

by IT Web Admin
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People of the state today gave warmth reception to pugilist Laishram Sarita who had courageously challenged and protested the bias decision of the judges during medal ceremony of the 60 kg women boxing category in Incheon Asian games. Talking to reporters soon after her arrival at Imphal Airport, Sarita said that she tender apology in view of the fate of the Indian team.“I tender apology because I have heard that the Indian Boxing team would be suspended because of me,” said emotional Sarita.“I have protested for the players of the nation and I don’t want any of the players to suffer because of me”, she added.Minutes before her arrival at Imphal Tulihal Airport, large number of people gathered at the airport with garlands. Volunteers of the Royal Riders Manipur also prepares for a dramatic welcome for the pugilist.Earlier, speaking to journalist at New Delhi Sarita has said that the International Boxing Association (AIBA) has accepted her “unconditional apology” for refusing to wear the bronze medal during the presentation ceremony in Incheon. Besides, she said, the boxing body has also cleared her participation in the next month’s World Championship to be held in South Korea.Sarita had apologised to the AIBA for her “emotional outburst” during the medal ceremony, where she refused to wear the medal and “presented” it to South Korean boxer Jina Park.The AIBA took a strong view of Sarita’s action and opened a disciplinary case against her, which could have resulted in a life-ban on her.According to a statement by the AIBA, Adille Sumariwalla, the chef-de-mission of the Indian contingent for the Asian Games, forwarded a letter of apology from Sarita to AIBA president Ching-Kuo Wu.“Hours after tendering my unconditional apology to the AIBA on Friday, I received a brief note from the international body saying they have accepted my apology and have dropped disciplinary proceedings against me,” said Sarita.“This means I can now participate in the World Championships in Jeju Island. For me, it’s the start of a new chapter. I want to forget this episode and move on,” she told The Tribune in an interview. Sarita’s husband Thoiba Singh, speaking on her behalf, said the AIBA, while accepting her apology, has warned her against such incidents in the future.“I don’t want my fellow boxers to suffer as a result of my action. Our previous federation (IABF) was suspended for nearly two years and I don’t want the AIBA to take any drastic step which could affect the future of our boxers,” she said, explaining why she tendered the apology.Sarita also clarified that what she did wasn’t pre-planned; it was just a spontaneous outburst. “I couldn’t control my emotions when the medal ceremony started. The entire bout, which I should have won, played on my mind. I offered Park the medal because that’s what she deserved. I was just emotionally exhausted and pained by the judges’ decision,” she said.

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Imphal Times is a daily English newspaper published in Imphal and is registered with Registrar of the Newspapers for India with Regd. No MANENG/2013/51092


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