ISLAMABAD - The cycling, archery, volleyball, wrestling and badminton squads Tuesday left for Guwati, India to represent Pakistan in the South Asian Games starting from February 5.

Around 18 officials and players are still waiting to get their accreditation cards. They have to wait for invitation to apply for Indian visas to participate in the South Asian Games.

Mismanagement was order of the day, as athletes were provided ‘wrong number’ shoes, clothes, national blazers and tracksuits.

Interestingly, the athletes, players and officials, who still have some time left prior to departure, managed to get bags, shoes, tracksuits, national blazer and other required stuff, while those players and officials, who were about to board flights, were left high and dry.

What was the purpose of locating a special space for tailor inside the PSB, when he can’t provide as per order sizes to the officials and players? How on earth one could expect from athletes to perform well without even given ordinary stuff properly and just 20$ daily allowance while representing country?

On the other hand IPC and PSB officials would enjoy unlimited daily allowances and no one could seek explanation from them. Is this justice? It is the players who earn respect and medals for the country not the joy-riders. A number of blue-eyed persons managed to onboard flights despite lot of eye-brows were raised as media unearthed the names of the joy-riders but no one from IPC or PSB bothered to take action. Instead they were given clean chit to waste national wealth on joy-rides. Athletes should have been given at least 100$ dailies per day, so they could focus on performing rather than thinking about how to manage both ends. Chef de Mission Muhammad Ali Gardezi, who is also the IPC Secretary, also left with the squad alongwith Dr Waqar, who always managed a spot in wherever international event is held. While other joy-riders like Fayyaz, who is a close aide of DG PSB, is also embarking on joy-ride. Same is the case with daily wager Shabana, who is swimming pool assistant, but left for India due to her influence. A number of deserving persons, who had spent their entire lives in the PSB, were never considered for international exposure. Strangely IPC Minister never bothers to keep check and balance and is more busy in other important areas.

The time is ripe that justice must be provided to bring free, fair and transparent policy of sending officials abroad. All should be provided equal opportunities when it comes to sending officials with contingents. Pakistan Olympic Association President LT Gen (R) Syed Arif Hassan should also stamp out his authority and not to accommodate and obey unwanted orders. It is national money, which should be purely spent on players and right persons for the right job and not with individuals personal liking and disliking. Squash coach Faheem Gul, Archery manager Zahid Awan and other high-profile persons are amongst those who had yet to receive accreditation cards. The POA must double up efforts and ensure players and officials get the timely accreditations.