The Sports Authority of India has filed a FIR after a false advertisement on social media under it's name for next year's Khelo India Games duped several grassroots athletes of money.
SAI has demanded an immediate probe and action. The Khelo India Games are scheduled to be held in Panchkula next year.
"The Sports Authority of India has received several complaints from grassroots-level athletes from across the country that an advertisement has been posted on social media platforms inviting applications to participate in the Khelo India Games scheduled in Panchkula in Haryana in 2021," the governing body said in a statement.
"In the advertisement athletes have been asked to deposit R6000 for enrolling in the Khelo India camp and have been assured that they can participate in Khelo India Games after trials."
SAI said the advertisement also used "logos of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Sports Authority of India and Khelo India, which misled several athletes to believe it to be a government advertisement."
The apex body said that it has managed to get the bank details of the culprit.
"A phone number was mentioned in advertisement and Acting as an aspirant, SAI has managed to get bank account details of the person, who is a resident of Agra," SAI said.
"The Sports Authority of India has lodged an FIR with the Uttar Pradesh police and asked for an immediate investigation of the issue."
Khelo India Games, government's flagship grassroots talent hunt programme, will return for its fourth edition next year.
SAI made it clear that "Khelo India is a government scheme and athletes do not need to pay any money to participate in it.
"No trails are conducted by SAI/Khelo India. Athletes qualify for participating in Khelo India Games based on their performances in School Games/University Games organized by SGFI/AIU." (With inputs from PTI)