India's sports officials are expected to lobby during the upcoming Paris 2024. GETTY IMAGES

India's sports officials plan to "advocate strongly" during the upcoming Paris Olympics to enhance the country's prospects of hosting the 2036 Games. If successful, they aim to promote indigenous disciplines such as yoga, kho kho, and kabaddi.

The Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) of the Sports Authority of India presented a comprehensive report outlining the necessary steps for a successful bid to the newly appointed Sports Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Thursday. The MOC has highlighted six sports, namely yoga, kho kho, kabaddi, chess, T20 cricket, and squash, which could potentially be included in the 2036 Olympics if India wins the bid to host the event.

"We met the new Sports Minister yesterday and handed him the report. The minister said he will need a few days to go through it. But he asked us to prepare another report on how sports can be a career option in the country, how to build interest among youth, how to bring private players into sports," a member of the MOC revealed.

"We are way ahead in preparing for the Olympic bid which will take place after Paris. But we will have to do a lot of lobbying with IOC during the Paris Games and we are completely prepared." The inclusion of host country preferences will be a topic for much later, as the hosting rights for the Games have not yet been finalised. The decision is likely to come after the International Olympic Committee elects a new President next year.

India's sports officials plan to
India's sports officials plan to "advocate strongly" during the upcoming Paris Olympics. GETTY IMAGES

If India's bid is successful, the proposed events would initially need to be introduced as demonstration events in the 2032 Brisbane Games before receiving final approval. During the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Congress in Mumbai last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed India's ambition to host the Games in 2036, pledging that the government would spare no effort in bringing the prestigious event to the country for the first time.

An MOC member noted that while incorporating these sports could boost India's medal count in the 2036 Olympics, the path forward won't be easy. The country must provide extensive support to establish these disciplines in a minimum number of participating nations.

"The sports ministry requested the MOC to compile a comprehensive report on our preparedness for the 2036 Games. This includes identifying new sports disciplines that a host nation can propose, strategies to combat doping, enhancing accountability in national federations' operations, and identifying private entities interested in investing in sports," the member informed Indian news agency, Press Trust of India.

"We researched in detail and identified six sports in which are strong. We are masters in yoga, chess, cricket, and kho kho is our traditional sport. So these sports will enhance our medal chances. We have already submitted our report to the ministry which will take it up with the PMO in due course of time."

India remain hopeful they will be the hosts of the 2036 Olympic Games. GETTY IMAGES
India remain hopeful they will be the hosts of the 2036 Olympic Games. GETTY IMAGES

According to IOC regulations, the host Organising Committee of the Olympics can propose the inclusion of one or more sports popular in the region, provided that the event is played across all five continents worldwide. Additionally, considerations include the sport's history and its broadcast suitability. 

The MOC member emphasised the challenging nature of securing the Games' hosting rights, noting India's competition against countries such as Qatar, Saudi Arabia, China, Hungary, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Canada, Spain, the United Kingdom, Poland, Mexico, South Korea, Egypt, Chile, Turkey, and Indonesia.

"But these indigenous sports will have to be introduced as demonstration events in 2032 Olympics. Besides India will have to extend support and ensure that a minimum number of countries, which is around 70 plus, have federations in place there.

"We will also have to extend coaching support to them and help them in organising international tournaments. So plenty of task is still left," the member concluded.