Maharashtra Sports Minister Vinod Tawde on Wednesday said author Shobhaa De has “insulted” Indian athletes by “mocking” they had gone to Rio Olympics to take selfies and “come back empty-handed.”
“Only the person who has managed to reach the Olympics knows the hard work and efforts that go into qualifying for the sports event,” he said.
Goal of Team India at the Olympics: Rio jao. Selfies lo. Khaali haat wapas aao. What a waste of money and opportunity.
— Shobhaa De (@DeShobhaa) August 8, 2016
“Saying such a thing about the players is an insult to them,” Tawde, who also holds Higher and Technical Education portfolios, said.
De had criticised the Indian athletes in a tweet and said their aim was only to click selfies and return without any medal.
The tweet angered many who slammed and trolled her. Following the backlash, De had come up with another tweet putting the blame on officials and not on the athletes.
“Official apathy main reason why we fare so poorly during every Olympics, not just Rio. Difficult for athletes to compete’ with this hurdle,” she had tweeted.