Reporting From Lausanne, Switzerland – The International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board Thursday lifted a ban imposed on India in February, clearing a path for the nation to bid for the 2032 Olympics and other Olympic-related events including the 2026 Youth Olympic Games.
“We have received the assurances of the Indian government that they will in the future respect the Olympic charter and that they will give permission to enter India for all athletes who want to participate in the relevant events,” IOC President Thomas Bach said after the Executive Board’s quarterly meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland.
On February 21, the IOC decided to “suspend all discussions with the Indian NOC and government regarding the potential applications for hosting future sports and Olympic-related events.”
The decision came after two Pakistani athletes were denied Visas to enter India to compete in the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup and Olympic qualifying event in New Delhi. Tensions had escalated between the two nations following a suicide bombing by a militant group in Kashmir.
The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has laid out an aggressive plan to bid for the 2026 Youth Olympics, the 2030 Asian Games and finally the 2032 Olympic Games. Delhi hosted the 2010 Commonwealth Games that were criticized for the delays, corruption and cost overruns.
Many nations have already expressed interest in bidding for the 2032 Games including Australia, Indonesia, China, Germany and jointly between North and South Korea. Some of these nations have launched plans based on the expectation that the Games would be awarded in 2025, but a new bid process that could be approved at the 134th IOC Session being held in Lausanne next week could change the timing.
Australian IOC member John Coates leads the working group proposing the changes and said that the 2032 Games could be awarded as early as next year.
Robert Livingstone will be reporting from the 134th IOC Session and 2026 Host City Election being held in Lausanne, Switzerland Starting June 24. Follow him on Twitter @enotsgnivil to keep up-to-date.