New Delhi,7th October 2015:: In view of popularity of traditional athletics such as running, long jump, high jump etc. in the rural areas of India and practically no expenditure required by way of buying expensive sports equipment to be an athlete and keeping in view the recent excellent performance of Indian athletes in various international games, Government of India is focusing at athletics as one of the key sports to be developed by bringing in international expertise in the field.
In this regard, an Expression of Intent (EOI) was signed between the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), Sports Authority of India and Athletic Federation of India (AFI) on 6 October, 2015. The President, IAAF, Lord Sebestian Coe, President, AFI, Shri Adille J. Sumariwalle and Shri Injeti Srinivas, DG, SAI signed the Joint Move to bring in international coaches, integrated support services and mental skills to create a professional atmosphere to develop elite athletes for international championships. SAI academy will primarily focus on IAAF Youth & Junior world champions and Youth Olympics Games. The infrastructure will be provided by SAI; IIAF will provide specialists in sprints, jump, heptathlon and Decathlon etc. The AFI will assist in management of the programme. The Expression of Intent was signed in the presence of Shri Rajiv Yadav, Secretary (Sports) who welcomed this Joint Move and hoped that this will be able to tap latent sea of talent in rural areas of the country in the field of athletics and provide them a shining edge.