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Valley Public Radio Staff
Sun July 29, 2012
The Olympics' Salahi Moment: Mystery Woman Gatecrashes Opening Ceremony
The Olympics have officially had a "Salahi moment." Remember, the White House gatecrashers? Well, on Friday during the opening ceremony, a young woman wearing a red jacket and turquoise pants was seen walking with the Indian delegation into Olympic stadium. Not only that, but she was walking alongside the flag bearer.
The only problem? No one knew who she was.
As The Times of India reports, the "mystery woman" angered the Indians even more than the lack of air time given to them by Olympic broadcasters. The acting mission chief P K Muralidharan Raja sent a letter to the London Games organizers.
"She had no business being there," Raja told the paper. "It was a clear case of intrusion."
He added: "It is a shame that she was walking with our athletes."
Today, reports Reuters the mystery has unraveled. London 2012 chief Sebastian Coe said the woman was a cast member.
"She made it into the opening ceremony. She obviously should not have been there," Coe told a news conference. "I can now confirm that she was a cast member. She was slightly over excited."
The apparent lack of security angered the Indian Olympic Association.
"How did they allow her in? It was a security lapse. Nobody knows who she was. She looks like an Indian," IOA vice president Tarlochan Singh said. "She walked along in the front line. Her dress was totally different. She was not wearing an identity card. This should have been noticed at an earlier stage, but nobody bothered."
Back in 2009, the Salahis, by the way, crashed the Obamas' state dinner for India.