The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Anju robbed in Paris

New Delhi: World No.6 long-jumper Anju Bobby George’s preparations for the world athletics final in Monaco this weekend got slightly derailed when she was robbed of all her valuables, including her passport, in Paris.

Anju’s bag went missing at the Charolety Stadium, near the Paris University, where she was training with her husband and coach Robert Bobby George for the Monaco meet on Tuesday morning.

“We were to book the flight tickets to Monaco after the training session and the bag contained all the documents, passports and credit cards,” Anju, India’s first medallist in a world athletic championships, said on Thursday.

Taken aback by the robbery, Anju said the stadium was almost empty when they were winding up the session by about 11.30 am.

“As usual we kept the bag at a place where we could see it from. But it disappeared from the middle of the ground by the time we finished jogging around the track,” Anju said.

“The police is yet to crack the case,” a distraught Anju said. “We had noticed two youngsters moving around but we thought they were security guards. But later the stadium officials said they were fire force personnel,” Anju said.

The star athlete said the incident came as a real shock as the stadium had tight security in place including closed circuit cameras.

Bobby George said the robbery had somewhat derailed Anju’s training as the schedule had gone haywire in the last two days with running around to arrange money, new passports and tickets.

“We will train one last time here in the evening before boarding the flight to Monaco tomorrow morning,” Bobby said.

While the Indian embassy arranged for temporary passports for the sports ministry pitched in by sanctioning some emergency fund to help out the star athlete.

Anju had produced her season’s best leap of 6.70m to win the historic bronze in Paris behind France’s Eunice Barber and world No.1 Tatyana Kotova.

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