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Delhi high court upholds validity of sports code

New Delhi, 10 May-2014,Chander Shekhar Luthra(IANS) : The Delhi high court on Friday directed all National Sports Federations (NSF) to follow the national sports code. This simply means that the Union sports ministry’s guidelines on age and tenure restriction have attained legal sanctity.

Delhi high court upholds validity of sports code

Western Court, Delhi, India. Architect R. J. R...
Western Court, Delhi, India. Architect R. J. Russell. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is a shot in the arm for the ministry which suspended the Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) and Archery Association of India (AAI) for not implementing age and tenure directives. The court’s directive will certainly make all NSFs accountable and their functioning transparent.

It must be mentioned here that it was former sports minister Ajay Maken who first directed the NSFs to hold elections according to the new guidelines. His successor, Jitendra Singh, followed the same route. Though the IABF was subsequently suspended by the International Boxing Federation (AIBA), it has now agreed to hold fresh elections under the sports code. However, the AAI is still adamant and plans to challenge the verdict.

“We (AAI) approached our world body, the International Field Archery Association (IFAA), soon after our suspension. We were clearly told to follow our own constitution and that’s what we have been doing. Our constitution doesn’t mention anything about about age and tenure,” AAI treasurer Virendra Sachdeva told dna on Friday.

AAI president Vijay Kumar Malhotra said he would plan his next move after going through HC judgment. However, Sachdeva explained that ever since the AAI was suspended, it hasn’t received any funding from the ministry. And that, he said, meant the AAI didn’t have to follow the sports code.

“We will certainly challenge this verdict in the Supreme Court. The AAI is doing everything the world body has asked it to do. We’re the sole authority to send Indian archers to any international meet,” added Sachdeva.

The sports ministry has repeatedly outlined that recognition to any NSF would rely on the current legal status of the organisation, recognition by the respective international federation, the Asian federation and the Indian Olympic Association (IOA). The IOA had also challenged the government’s authority, but the latest directive from the court has come as a jolt.


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