Her uncle alleged that Usha was not keen on Tintu reaping athletic glory, for fear of losing her own.

Athlete Tintu Lukas family distances themselves from uncles allegations against coach PT UshaPTI
news Sports Monday, August 22, 2016 - 18:04

Athlete Tintu Luka’s uncle on Sunday reportedly accused former sprint queen and current coach PT Usha of running a business centre in the guise of a training institution.

Reiterating that Usha denies her students even the most basic rights at the centre, Tintu’s uncle Joyichan told a Malayalam news website that the training school also did not have facilities on par with international standards.

He went on to allege that Usha was not keen on Tintu reaping athletic glory, for fear of losing her own.

Tintu’s family however distanced themselves from Joyichan’s allegations against PT Usha and her training school.

Speaking to The News Minute, Tintu’s mother Lissy felt that her brother’s comments must not be taken seriously, as he may have spoken out of sheer disappointment over Tintu’s lacklustre performance at the Rio Olympics.

Tintu was expected to be one of the few Indian athletes who could have made it to the finals. Instead, she could only notch up a sixth position in her 800m heats, much to the disappointment of not just her family, but the entire nation as well.

“That Joyichan has made such allegations against PT Usha was brought to our notice. But it should be taken as his personal opinion rather than attribute it to Tintu’s family. Neither Tintu nor we agree with what Joyichan said,” Lissy remarked.

She clarified that this is the first time that Joyichan had made such a comment on Tintu’s sporting career. 45-year old Lissy also felt that the fact that Tintu had taken ill a couple of days before her event had taken a toll on her performance.

“What can we say about her performance? She did not make it this time. One can only say that it is a matter of luck, or the lack of it. We all are upset at the outcome, but that does not mean we will resort to criticizing the school for it,” she shared.

Joychan -who claimed to be Tintu’s local guardian- had reportedly complained that Tintu was not allowed to meet her family and that she was being deliberately kept away from them.

He also questioned the absence of a physiotherapist for the athletes who trained at Usha’s school that boasted of international standards.

To this, Lissy conceded that that the family was allowed to meet Tintu only on Sundays, but they had long come to terms with not being able to be in constant touch with their daughter.

It was natural that -Lissy felt- they could not maintain regular touch with their daughter, especially when Tintu had to participate in various sporting events or undergo rigorous coaching for upcoming events. “But then we understand that the school too has Tintu’s best interests at heart,” she said.

Responding to the allegations, Ajanachandran –Secretary of the Usha School of Athletics- dismissed them as totally baseless ones.

“Is he the one who provides her training? How then can he understand what it takes to train an athlete? Did we not all read about PV Sindhu’s coach saying that she was not allowed to use her phone during her Olympic preparations? Athletes voluntarily join here. We do not force anybody to continue to stay at the school. I am sure Tintu and her family do not share his opinion,” he stressed.

Tintu Luka and PT Usha were not available for comment as they are yet to return from Rio.