IOA Elections: Earlier today, the Minister of Law and Justice of India announced today that legendary PT Usha has been elected as the first woman president of the Indian Olympic Association. One of the most accomplished athletes in the history of Indian sports, Usha has a total of 11 medals including four golds that she won in the Asian Games between 1982 and 1994. In her playing days, Usha participated in 200m, 400m hurdles, and 4X400 relay races. She also won four gold medals at the Seoul Asan Games in 1986.
Usha expressed her interest and intentions to run for IOA on November 26, 2022. In her favour, Usha was the only known face to run for the election of the top position in the sports organization. On November 25, 2022, Umesh Sinha, the reporting officer for the IOA elections reported that the process was underway. The legendary Usha submitted her candidacy papers for the position of president on 27th November 2022.
A tweet from Usha earlier read:
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!
The Payyoli Express was nominated as a Rajya Sabha member in July by the ruling party Bharatiya Janata Party. Usha also had been selected as one of the eight Sportspersons of Outstanding Merit (SOM) by the Athletes Commission of the IOA, making her an electoral college member. The deadline to file nomination papers for the IOA elections ended on Sunday (November 27). As of today, Usha is most remembered for missing out on a medal in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics 400m hurdles final, where she was beaten by Cristieana Cojocaru of Romania by one-hundredth of a second.
There are a total of 66 members from a total of 33 National Sports Federations which have nominated one male and one female each, eight SOMs (four male and four female), two from the Athletes Commission (one male and one female), and a member of International Olympic Committee in India, Nita Ambani. The IOA electoral college also has more women members (39) than males (38)