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Hurt Anju resigns as Kerala Sports Council president

Last updated on: June 22, 2016 18:01 IST

‘My council members and I do not want to continue in the wake of such allegations against us’

'Anybody can kill sports but nobody can defeat a sports star'

 Anju Bobby GeorgeHurt by allegations of corruption levelled against her by state Sports Minister E P Jayarajan, India's lone athletics World Championships medal winner Anju Bobby George, on Wednesday, resigned as President of the Kerala Sports Council.

Announcing her decision to quit, the celebrated long jumper said it was not proper to continue after ‘allegations’ and ‘misunderstandings’ cropped up against her.

An emotional Anju also said, "Anybody can kill sports but nobody can defeat a sports star."

Besides the iconic athlete, 13 other members of the council, including noted volleyball player Tom Jose, resigned.

"It is not proper to continue even after hearing all these allegations. My council members and I do not want to continue in the wake of such misunderstandings and allegations against us," said Anju.

She declared her decision after an hour-long meeting at the council's headquarters.

She said those who did not like her decision to form an ethics commission to expose corruption and illegal dealings in the council in the past are behind the cropping up of false allegations against her.

"I do not think the allegations had occurred due to any issue from the side of government or the council. Those who fear the proposed ethics commission are the ones who are behind all this," she said, without naming anybody.

"As a revenue official and an athlete who participated in a number of international competitions, I could easily find out many malpractices in the Sports Council when I took charge. I think the problems began there," she alleged.

"Even my e-mail ID was hacked. In such circumstances me and my council members decided to form an ethics commission to expose the corruption, harassment and other illegal dealings there," the 39-year-old said.

Anju also said she accepted the post of Sports Council president, offered by the previous UDF government, thinking that it was her moral responsibility to serve the sports sector in the home state.

Defending her brother Ajith Markose's appointment to a high-paying post in the council, she said he is an established coach having an international license, certified by the Athletics Federation of India.

"His appointment was a government decision and not by the council. Me and other council members just upheld it. In the wake of the present controversies he also decided to resign the post," she said.

She also wanted a detailed probe into the affairs of the Sports Council in the last 10 years, including that of the sports lottery.

She had earlier this month alleged that the Sports Minister had "insulted" her and accused her of "corruption" when she came to meet him for the first time, after the CPI(M)-led LDF government came into power.

Anju, who was appointed as Council President by the previous UDF government, also complained to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan about the minister's behaviour.

She later sent an open letter to Jayarajan seeking a detailed probe into the affairs of the council in the last 10 years.

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