Sports bodies feel the heat of HC order
New Delhi November 4:
The uproar over the High Court order upholding the guidelines on the tenure and age limit of sports administrators in the country today grew in volume with Archery Association of India president V.K. Malhotra including the Prime Minister and his Cabinet in a scathing verbal attack.
In an apparent attempt to add legitimacy to his 31-year ‘rule’ over the archery body, Malhotra said, “The argument that I would like to present is there is no tenure limitation for the Prime Minister of India, the other ministers, MLAs, MPs or Chief Ministers of the states. For that matter, even any other registered societies of the country this policy is not valid then why should this be applicable to only the sports bodies?”
It is interesting to note that there are a vast number of politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen who will be ousted from their respective ‘fiefdoms’ if the guidelines are brought into practice. Prominent among those in danger of being booted out are Archery Association of India president V.K. Malhotra (BJP leader), Captain Satish Sharma, president Aero Club (Congress leader), IOA president Suresh Kalmadi (Congress leader), IOA general secretary Randhir Singh (former shooter) and Cycling Association of India president Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa (SAD leader). The sports ministry is hell bent on getting rid of these ‘long-serving’ bosses and Union Minister for Sports M S Gill has invited enough spiteful attacks for his stand.
The government guidelines specify that an office-bearer cannot continue after the age of 70, and for not more than three terms. It also fixed a two-term (eight years) tenure for other sports bodies, which puts Indian Amateur Boxing Federation boss Abhay Chautala, All India Tennis Association president Yashwant Sinha and Rowing Federation of India president Brig K.P. Singh Deo in the dock as they have either completed the eight-year mark or are on the verge of doing so.
Another challenge for the IOA is that it has been asked by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to amend its constitution to get the approval of the IOC. The IOA has been asked to amend its constitution to be in line with the IOC charter, and for ratification by the international body, limiting the number of votes to just 38.