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    Pawar backs politicians' role in sports

    Agriculture Minister defended the presence of politicians in sports organisations.

    New Delhi: Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, who earlier headed the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), on Thursday defended the presence of politicians in sports organisations.

    "People like me who are associated with sports know how to improve infrastructure, increase support for players, especially retired players. We don’t take interest in day-to-day affairs," Pawar said in an interaction with reporters at the Indian Women's Press Corps here.

    Pawar said when he was the chief of the BCCI he ensured that selection of players for the national team was done by a committee that included eminent players.

    He said the present BCCI president Shashank Manohar does not take decisions on selection of players.

    "They take basic decisions. But suppose (issues related to) construction of stadium or providing pensions (were there), I think that people like us can do more than players," he said.

    Pawar has been associated with several sports organisations in Maharashtra, including federations related to kho-kho, kabaddi and wrestling.

    He said it was sad that the media had a fixation for cricket. "Maybe, it helps them to garner more TRPs," he said.