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PT Usha has been elected to become the president of Indian Olympic Association (IOA), Kiren Rijiju has said. The Minister of Law and Justice of India made the announcement on Twitter while congratulating the legendary Indian athlete.

“Congratulations to legendary Golden Girl, Smt. P T Usha on being elected as the President of Indian Olympic Association. I also congratulate all the sporting heroes of our country on becoming the office bearers of the prestigious IOA! Nation is proud of them," the Arunachal Pradesh MP tweeted.

PT Usha happens to be the first woman president of the IOA. On November 26, Usha announced her intention to run for IOA president. While the election was scheduled to take place on December 10, The Payyoli Express was the only contender, thus winning the election for the top position in the sports organisation.

One of the most accomplished athletes from India, PT Usha has won 11 medals, including four gold, at the Asian Games between 1982 and 1994. She won four gold medals at the Seoul Asan Games in 1986 in the 200 metre, 400 metre, 400 metre hurdles, and 4 x 400 relay. She also took home a silver in the 100 metre.

On November 27 itself, the deadline for submitting nomination papers for the IOA elections expired. Umesh Sinha, the returning officer for the IOA elections, reported that, since the process had gotten underway on November 25, no other nominations were made for any positions.

The 58-year-old, who won many gold medals at the Asian Games and finished fourth in the 400-metre hurdles final at the 1984 Olympics, submitted her candidacy papers for the position of president on November 27 along with her team for the different positions.

"With the warm support of my Fellow Athletes and National Federations I am humbled and honoured to accept and file for the Nomination of the President Of IOA!," tweeted Usha, whom the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had nominated as a Rajya Sabha member in July.

Her nomination met with enthusiasm and received a warm welcome from her fans. “Really nice to hear this message. You truly deserve this honour. I know that you will be appointed and will administer to the best of your abilities. All the best for this activity," wrote one user.

Usha is best known for missing out on a medal in the 400m hurdles final of the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, where she was defeated by Romanian Cristieana Cojocaru by a hundredth of a second. Usha won 23 medals, including 14 gold, in the Asian Championships from 1983 to 1998.

(With PTI inputs)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sounak Mukhopadhyay

Sounak Mukhopadhyay, who also goes by the name Sounak Mukherjee, has been producing digital news since 2012. He's worked for the International Business Times, The Inquisitr, and Moneycontrol in the past. He's also contributed to Free Press Journal and TheRichest with feature articles. He covers news for a wide range of subjects including business, finance, economy, politics and social media. Before working with digital news publications, he worked as a freelance content writer.
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