Non que l'omniprésence chinoise dans les décomptes de breloques m'agace (quoique), mais l'organisation de futurs JO en Inde serait peut-être l'élément déclencheur susceptible de mettre sur orbite une nation dont le milliard d'habitants figure systématiquement au fin fond des bilans per capita.

Il semble y avoir des raisons culturelles à cette faible réussite :

So how to explain the Olympic medal deficiency? There are a number of theories. Probably the most common is that both India as a country and Indians as individuals just have other priorities. "Sport was never a priority for a majority of Indian parents and their kids," Indian sports psychologist Madhuli Kulkarni told EuroNews. "In fact we have a saying in Hindi, 'Kheloge kudoge to honge kharab, padhoge likhoge to banoge nawab' which means that your life will be a waste if you play but if you study or do well in academics you will be a king."

Neither the Will nor the Cash: Why India Wins So Few Olympic Medals (The Atlantic, 03/08/2012)

ou encore

In general India is weak in sports that require high levels of physical fitness. And this reflects traditional caste and class attitudes to physical effort. India is after all a society in which even middle class people will have a servant bring them a glass of water from just a few feet away, and in which for centuries high status has derived in part from not needing to make physical effort, thanks to the presence of many others whose role in life is to make efforts for their superiors.

Why India wins so few medals at the Olympics (J. Foreman)

Parmi les autres arguments évoqués, la faible proportion de la population qui a effectivement accès à des infrastructures sportives (mais 350 millions d'urbains quand même, et le contre-exemple des pays africains en athlétisme ...), le manque de ressources économiques, la fragmentation sociale et physique, un gouvernement trop décentralisé ... et démocratique !

A lire sur le sujet :

  • Why does India perform so poorly at the Olympics? (Euronews, 19/07/2012)
  • The sad but true story of India’s Olympic failings (A. Subramaniam, 28/07/2012)
  • Are Indian athletes incapable of hard work? (A. Subramaniam, 04/08/2012)