Mariyappan Among Indian Paralympians In Quarantine, Will Miss Opening Ceremony
With Mariyappan in quarantine, javelin thrower Tek Chand has been named the flag-bearer for the opening ceremony.
Hours before the 4:30pm IST opening ceremony of the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics, Indian flag-bearer Mariyappan Thangavelu is among the Indians who have been forced to go into quarantine after a co-passenger on their flight to Tokyo has tested positive.
Confirming the development, the Paralympic Committee of India (PCI) issued a statement saying, "Thangavelu Mariyappan will not be part of India's opening ceremony today. He has been replaced by Tek Chand as the country's flag bearer. On his flight to Tokyo, Mariyappan came in close contact with a covid positive foreign passenger. Though on reaching the village he has been Tested for 6 days and all his reports are negative, but the Organizing Committee has advised not to make Mariyaapan participate in the Opening Ceremony today."
The Paralympic committee had earlier informed that five para-athletes and six officials from India would participate in the opening ceremony with discus thrower Vinod Kumar, javelin thrower Tek Chand and powerlifters Jaideep and Sakina Khatun included in the list.
On Monday, 13 individuals, including an athlete, tested positive for Covid-19 on the eve of the opening ceremony. There were four from among Games-related personnel and seven Tokyo 2020 contractors. One Tokyo 2020 employee too has returned a positive report.
The addition of 13 persons on Monday took the total tally of Covid positive tests at the Games to 142 since they started testing for the Paralympic Games on August 12.
Japan has seen a surge of Covid--19 cases and the government has been forced to extend the emergency to more provinces. The country reported 22,273 new cases on Sunday which took the to 1,296,664 the total number of positive cases in the country.
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