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Indian Olympic gatecrasher identified as cast member

posted 29 Jul 2012, 09:34 by Mpelembe Admin   [ updated 29 Jul 2012, 09:34 ]

Lord Coe confirms a woman who gatecrashed India's parade at the Olympic opening ceremony was a member of the cast.

LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (JULY 29, 2012) (REUTERS) - A woman who gatecrashed India's parade at the Olympic opening ceremony was a member of the cast from the extravaganza but should not have been with the athletes, London 2012 chief Sebastian Coe said on Sunday (July 29).

Indian officials were incensed by her unauthorised presence alongside flag-bearing wrestler Sushil Kumar on Friday (July 27), wearing red and blue in complete contrast to female members of the contingent who were sporting yellow saris and blue blazers.

Coe told a news conference it was clear the woman should not have been there.

"I think I can now confirm that she was a cast member who clearly got slightly over excited," he said.

The apparent lack of security angered the Indian Olympic Association. IOA vice president Tarlochan Singh said that given the woman was not wearing an identity card and that she was dressed differently from the athletes, her presence should have been noticed earlier.

The lavish opening ceremony, which included hundreds of cast members and was hailed around the world as a success, was watched by a packed 60,000-strong crowd in the Olympic stadium.

Indian news websites said the woman was a postgraduate student from Bangalore.

Security concerns dogged the run up to the Games with the British government having to draft in thousands of troops to help guard Olympic venues after private contractor G4S said it could not supply enough staff.

"This was bizarre. We will ask for an apology," acting Indian chef de mission PKM Raja was quoted as saying by the Times of India newspaper.

"The Indian contingent was shown for just 10 seconds and to think this lady hogged all the limelight."