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Indian food at Tokyo Olympics isn't winning medals

At Tokyo Olympics, Indian athletes request for more than 100 electric kettles and an official says that desi 'food at best is average'

Desi food at Tokyo Olympics can be a lot better, says an official. (Charles Deluvio, Unsplash)
Desi food at Tokyo Olympics can be a lot better, says an official. (Charles Deluvio, Unsplash)

The Indian contingent was largely satisfied with the food and facilities provided at the Olympic Games Village, but a request has gone out to the Indian Embassy for 100 plus electric kettles to meet the athletes' requirement of warm water.

The kettles have not been kept in rooms at the Village. Also, the rooms will be cleaned every third day to minimise their contact with the housekeeping staff as organisers face a huge task of staging the Games in COVID-19 times.

A major chunk of the Indian contingent arrived here on Sunday and has spent close to two days at the Village.

"The request for the kettle has come from the athletes. They need to drink warm water in the morning. We have requested the Indian Embassy here and it should be arranged soon," India's Deputy Chef de Mission Prem Verma said.

A team official informed that accommodation is spick and span but cleaning has not been done since they checked in on Sunday.

On that front, Verma said: "To minimise contact, Local Organising Committee has advised for cleaning every third day but if someone wants to get the room cleaned daily, they can ask for it. The towels can be change from the ground floor on a daily basis."

The athletes are being served food from all around the world including India.

Indian paddler G Sathiyan said that he has had no issues with the food and training arrangements so far but another team official said the desi food can be a lot better.

"It has been smooth for us. No complaints at all. I had daal and parotta yesterday and it was fine," Sathiyan said.

However, the team official added: "I would advise the athletes to go for continental or Japanese food. The Indian food at best is average and at times undercooked.

"You rather have the local food. It is much better and the sea food being served is very fresh."

Majority of the athletes are being handed testing kits daily so that they can hand over their swab samples to the IOA officials before leaving for training.

"As of now, the number of Indians at the village are little more than 100. We have asked for testing kits for five days but have been getting only on a daily basis which is understandable with the requirement rising as more and more athletes and officials check into the village," said Verma.

On food arrangements, he added: "When you come to another country, you should embrace its culture including food. There is nothing wrong with the Indian food being served in the dining hall but one should not compare with what we get back home.

"There is a lot of variety. The dining area covers two floors and proper social distancing is being followed with fibre glass separating the seats."

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