A day after Indian athlete OP Jaisha lashed out against the Indian officials at the Rio Olympics, claiming that they did not serve her any refreshments during the women's marathon, fellow long-distance runner Kavita Raut differed with the Kerala athlete's version.
Jaisha, who finished 89th in the women's marathon, had collapsed when she got past the finish line and was taken to the medical room for treatment. The 31-year-old had alleged that she only got refreshments from the Olympics organisers, who offered the runners water every eight kilometers. She had told ANI, " All the [other] countries had their stalls at every two kilometres, but our country's stall was empty."
Raut, who had finished 120th in the race, refused to get dragged into the controversy. Contrary to her compatriot's version, she told India Today, "I wouldn't like to comment on what Jaisha has to say, but as far as I am concerned, I was asked a day before the race if I would need any refreshments or drinks during the race."
The Athletics Federation of India also rubbished Jaisha's allegations. In a statement, the AFI said, "Each team is allowed to keep their own personalised drinks on the booths, marked in a colour as per the choice of the team and athlete. Accordingly, as per the rule, on the night ahead of women's marathon race, [the] Indian team manager carried 16 empty bottles, eight each for Jaisha and Kavita Raut, and visited the duo and their coach Nikolai Snesarev in their room."
As a counter to AFI's justification, Jaisha further added, "How would the representatives of AFI know the truth if they were not even there? I am sure that had something grave happened to me, AFI would have still said that OP Jaisha didn't avail refreshments."
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