London(PTI): The London Games organisers today apologised to the Indian contingent over the issue of an unidentified woman gatecrashing into the team’s march past at the Opening Ceremony here on Friday.
Angry at the “mystery” woman’s presence among them during the opening gala, the Indian contingent had shot off a letter to the Games organisers LOCOG who have now apologised over the incident.
“We have recieved a letter from the London Games organisers apologising over the incident,” according to a source in the Indian contingent.
The woman in red shirt and blue trouser, later identified as Madhura Nagendra, a post-graduate from Bangalore, had caused a flutter during the opening ceremony as she hogged the limelight by walking along with the flagbearer Sushil Kumar and waving to the crowd.
The Indians were understandably agitated that a person who was not part of the delegation was allowed to accompany the team and hog the limelight in the process.
“She had no business to walk with the Indian contingent and we are taking up the issue with the organisers. We don’t know who she is and why she was allowed to walk in. It is a shame that she was with the athletes in the march past,” Indian contingent’s acting Chef-de-Mission Muralidharan Raja had said.
LOCOG Chairman Lord Sebastian Coe had sought to cool down the frayed tempers among the Indians, saying that he would meet with the Indian delegation to discuss the matter.
“I was told about it. She sort of made it into the Opening Ceremony. She was a cast member who clearly got slightly overexcited. She shouldn’t have been there,” Coe said yesterday.
“There is a very important point to take into consideration here. I don’t minimize the fact that she got in Opening Ceremony. We will have our own discussion about that,” he added.
Coe had, however, insisted that the unidentified woman posed no danger to the Indian team or the proceedings because, as a cast member for the opening ceremony, she had to go through all the security checks that everyone else does to get into the Olympic Stadium.
“She could not have got into the Olympic Park without having gone through our security protocols. They seem to have run away with the idea that she just walked of the street and onto the Opening Ceremony. We are looking into it. She should not have been there,” Coe had said.