NEW DELHI: Beijing Olympic Games Gold medallist Abhinav Bindra on Friday resigned as the chairman of the Sports Ministry’s Target Olympic Podium (TOP).
In posting on his official Twitter handle, the Indian shooter announced his decision and said he will now focus on private projects and expanding his Abhinav Bindra Targeting Performance Centres across India.
“New years come with exciting new prospects. Will be looking to expand and run @abhinavbindratp centres across the country and make them accessible to our athletes. Will be resigning public posts of Govt Observer shooting and Chairman TOP Scheme Athlete Identification Committee with immediate effect,” Bindra tweeted.
“I thank the @IndiaSports for the opportunity provided to serve. I will always remain accessible to any fellow athlete and look forward to what 2018 holds,” he further tweeted.
Separately, in a letter sent to Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, he asked to be relieved from posts of national observer (shooting) and chairman of TOP committee to avoid any potential conflict of interest as he is also involved in private projects.
“As I will now be involving myself more deeply in private projects, including the establishment and operation of Abhinav Bindra Target Performance Centre across the country, I believe there could be a potential conflict of interest between these positions as more athletes start training at these centres,” PTI quotes Bindra as having written in his letter to Rathore.
Stressing on the need to maintain the sanctity of government positions, Bindra further wrote: “I therefore sincerely request you to relieve me of these two posts so that any potential conflict of interest can be avoided before it arises and the sanctity of these posts is fully retained.”
Recently, Olympics medallists boxer MC Mary Kom and wrestler Sushil Kumar had also resigned from their respective national observer posts.
Bindra in January was appointed chairman of a re-constituted TOP committee, which also includes athletics legend PT Usha and badminton great Prakash Padukone, among others.