As per the latest reports, COVID-19 has affected more than 4 lakh people and more than 19 thousand deaths have been reported all across the world. This Pandemic made the world stagnant, every thing is being postponed, universities and offices across the world are closed, and many countries are under lockdown. Among these postponed events, one major event of the Olympics is now on the list.
On Tuesday 24th March, Prime Minister of Japan Mr. Shinzo Abe and Mr. Thomas Bach who is the President of International Olympics Committee (IOC), decided to delay the event till 2021. Games were scheduled from July 24 to August 9, 2020, but due to mounting pressure amid the disastrous situation caused by COVID-19, they finally decided to do so. Despite the fact that this major event will take place in 2021, but still, it would be called as Olympics 2020. A joint statement was released by IOC and Tokyo Olympics organizing committee Which says “ The IOC president and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community,” “The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present. ” “Therefore, it was agreed that the Olympic flame will stay in Japan.”
This is not the first time that the Olympics get postponed, earlier also during world wars this event got canceled thrice. Last week, IOC said that it was thinking of a number of options ranging from a postponement to modifying the event so that it could still take place as per the schedule.
Athletes are unable to go for their training, so many sporting bodies and athletes themselves urged the IOC to postpone the event. Countries like Australia and Canada had announced that they are not going to send their athletes to Tokyo Olympics this year amid this virus threat.
The monetary cost of this delay of the event is big. According to an estimate, the budget of the event was $25 billion, out of which a major sum has already been spent on giant infrastructures like transportation networks, hotels, and new venues.
Andrew Parson who is the President of the International Paralympic Committee, admires this decision and said “ The health and well-being of human life must always be our number one priority and staging a sports event of any kind during this pandemic is simply not possible. Sport is not the most important thing right now, preserving human life is.” He added, “At a time when many major communities around the world are in lockdown, with workplaces and shops closed and people urged not to leave their own homes, continuing to pursue the dream of the Tokyo 2020 Games happening this year does not make sense.”