Bar On The Country'S Olympic Participation!
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Bar on the country's Olympic participation!

 
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Because Indian Politics inflicts the sports and India defied Olympic Charter,Bar on the country's Olympic participation!

Troubled galaxy Destroyed Dreams, Chapter 826

Palash Biswas

Mobile: 919903717833

Skype ID: palash.biswas44

Email: palashbiswaskl@gmail.com

Because Indian Politics inflicts the sports and India defied Olympic Charter,Bar on the country's Olympic participation!We the mango people always have been complaining about the politics in sports. Now, the dirt is spilling on the street.It is quite obvious why a sports icon like Olympic champ Abhinav Bindra backs IOC threat to ban India!Suspension from IOC membership would mean India would not receive IOC funding and its officials would be banned from attending Olympic meetings and events.India's athletes would also be barred from competing in the Olympics under the national flag, although the IOC could allow some to participate under the Olympic flag. Former IOA secretary general Randhir Singh on Tuesday said that the IOC's decision to ban the Indian Olympic Association gives an "opportunity" to clean the mess, and insisted that the international body is not against the country but against the system.India's sports officials on Tuesday slammed the International Olympic Committee's decision to suspend the country's membership, saying it was "wrong and one-sided".

Top athletes were quick to share their disappointment after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) suspended the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) due to government interference.

Shooter Abhinav Bindra, India's sole individual gold medallist at the Olympics, tweeted: "Bye Bye IOA, hope to see u again soon, hopefully cleaner!"

Boxer MC Mary Kom, who won a bronze at the London Olympics, said it would be difficult for her to compete without knowing the fate of Indian sports.

"I do not know much about this (suspension). I don't have a good feeling about this. I will not be able to give my 100 percent without the Indian flag," said Mary Kom, suggesting India's possible exclusion from the major sporting events.

Veteran tennis player Mahesh Bhupathi had this to say: "So I got banned, now the IOA gets banned, they says things like these normally happen in three's.. Wonder what's next!!"

Former Indian cricekter Bishan Singh Bedi asked on his twitter page: "What is worse -IOA, IOC or IPL?! Please come forward with constructive response. Remember the sportspersons' involvement is strictly at stake. Thanks."

With the suspension, India is now in a dubious list that includes Iraq, Kuwait and Afghanistan.

In a huge embarrassment for India, the International Olympic Committee on Tuesday suspended the Indian Olympic Association because of government interference, a development which puts a bar on the country's Olympic participation.Two officials with knowledge of the decision said that a formal decision about the suspension will be made at the end of the first day's Executive Board meeting.The decision was largely expected after the IOA decided to go ahead with the elections on Wednesday under the government's Sports Code, defying the IOC's diktat to hold the polls under the Olympic Charter.The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the official announcement had not been made yet.

Indian Olympic Association’s (IOA) acting president Vijay Kumar Malhotra has saidthe election process is in conformity with the Olympic Charter. Stating that the election is being conducted by a three-member commission comprising eminent jurists, he said no nominations has been rejected under government’s new sports code.

At its December 4-5 meeting, the International Olympic Committee’s(IOC) executive board is likely to bring in a resolution to suspend India for going ahead with the elections. “The IOA has, many a time, called upon the government to scrap this ill-conceived code,” said Malhotra, adding: “We met the PMlast year and then have been voicing our opposition to the code and other attempts by the government to interfere in the affairs of the IOA and national sports federations.” He further said that he had written to IOC chief Jacques Rogge assuring him that autonomy of the IOA shall be “preserved.”

However, Malhotra conceded that it has been difficult time for the IOA as it has been caught in a Catch 22 situation. On one hand the government has been threatening the NSF’s with de-recognition if they don’t follow the code and on the other hand, the Delhi high court has given instructions to hold the ongoing elections as per the IOA constitution as well as the sports code.


The sword of Damocles had been hanging over the IOA’s head since the summer of 2010 when the then Sports Minister, M.S. Gill, revised the government guidelines for National Sports Federations (NSFs) and brought in a new set of stipulations for tenure of office-bearers.The Hindu reports.

Yet, the current threat, held out by none other than the IOC President, Jacques Rogge, looks far more potent than ever before.

During the past two years the IOC had tried to dissuade the Union Government from persisting with the guidelines or pursuing the National Sports Bill.

Though the Sports Bill has been put on the backburner since August, 2011, the courts have concurred with the government that the National Sports Code 2011 containing the tenure guidelines (May 2010) is enforceable.

The Delhi High Court had also ordered on September 19 last that the IOA elections should be held as per its constitution “as well as the Sports Code of the Government of India.”

Late reaction

The IOC had time to react at least from November 5 when its attention was drawn by the IOA to the election notice containing the provisions of the Sports Code, but it chose not to till November 15 when the election process was well underway.

Now, the suspension threat looks real.

By waking up to the perceived violation of the Charter, the IOC has left itself vulnerable to the charge of bias in favour of one of the groups engaged in the elections.

IOC chief Rogge has been on record that laws should be respected.

This is what he told the first World Sports Convention in Acapulco, Mexico, on October 23, 2010: “What does ‘autonomy of sport’ mean? Let me first say what it does not mean: It does not mean that we are above the law or that we should not be expected to adhere to the principles of good governance.

It simply means that the world of sport and sports administration should be free from direct political or government interference.

It means that governments should not interfere with fair elections for National Olympic Committees…”

Yet, an NOC is being threatened today with suspension because it has said it was bound by the law of the land.

The rules being followed are similar to the ones that the IOC has for its own members and the Executive Board.

Fresh dialogue

A fresh round of dialogue looks possible. Sticking to the technicality that the elections had been notified under the Sports Code and thus violated the Charter may only deepen the crisis.

The easier solution would of course be for the IOA and the NSFs to amend their constitutions and fall in line with the government diktat.

In any case a large majority of the NSFs have agreed, at least in principle, to follow the Sports Code even if they are doing it under pressure.

The IOC letter itself has suggested that the IOA could amend the constitution and agree to the guidelines without infringing the provisions in the Olympic Charter.

In simpler terms the IOC wants the IOA to amend its constitution on its own without being forced to do it by an outside agency.

Will the IOA do it? Or will the IOC stick to its guns and impose a suspension and give its blessings to an ad hoc body against the wishes of the majority of the Olympic sports federations just because a court had ordered that government regulations should be followed?

Or will the IOC point out that one group has withdrawn from the contest since it could not fathom the idea of a government code being followed even if that code might have been followed by almost all leading federations during the past year or more and will be followed in the coming months?

With the International Olympic Committee (IOC) proposing to suspend the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) during its December 4-5 executive board meeting at Lausanne, the IOA, in a last-ditch effort, has decided to rush two of its officials to Switzerland to plead their case before the IOC top brass.Times of India reports.


Narinder Batra and RK Anand are the two officials who have been entrusted with the task of convincing the world body against disaffiliating the IOA for conducting its elections under the government's Sports Code. The IOC had earlier warned against government interference in the elections, and had demanded it to be conducted as per the Olympic Charter.

Batra, who is also the secretary general of Hockey India, said they were waiting for a confirmation from the IOC. "We have already booked the tickets and will board the flight as soon as we get a confirmation from the IOC's side. We have prepared everything to present our case before the IOC officials. We have done our homework and are hopeful of a favourable result," he was quoted as saying in agency reports.

Virender Nanavati, who got elected unopposed as senior vice-president, said the IOC has not been given a correct picture of the whole story. "I think the IOC has not been given a correct picture of the whole story. The two officials are going to do just that and we are hopeful that it will not take any action after hearing our side of the story," he said.

Meanwhile, India's lone individual Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra on Sunday lashed out at the country's sports officials, saying an Olympic ban could be a "blessing in disguise".

"The current mess is completely of the Indian Olympic Association's making," Bindra, who won a rifle shooting gold at the 2008 Beijing Games, wrote in a newspaper.

The International Olympic Committee's (IOC) executive board, which meets in Lausanne on December 4 and 5, will decide if the Indian federation should be suspended for flouting the Olympic charter in its election process.

The IOA had been directed by a Delhi court to hold elections according to the government's sports code, while the IOC wanted it to abide by the Olympic charter that favours autonomy.

Elections to the faction-ridden IOA are due to be held on December 5, but have become a formality after a rival group led by IOC member Randhir Singh withdrew from the contest last week.

It left tainted sports official Lalit Bhanot elected unopposed as the IOA's secretary-general while Haryana state politician Abhey Singh Chautala became president.

Bhanot is out on bail after serving 11 months in jail last year over corruption charges during the 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi when he was secretary-general of the organising committee.

The IOC Ethics Commission had in October warned the Indian body against fielding either Bhanot or former IOA chief Suresh Kalmadi -- who is also on bail over corruption charges.

Both Bhanot and Chautala have been close associates of Kalmadi.

Bindra, whose victory in Beijing was warmly received in cricket-crazy India, said he was aghast at Bhanot joining the IOA.

"It's about politics and stooping to a new low," Bindra wrote in the newspaper. "How can he return? It is agonising to see such people coming back. It makes my blood boil."

Bindra said any possible ban from the Olympic movement may just be what India needed to set its sports house in order.

"If our Olympic association is banned, it could be a blessing in disguise," he wrote. "With no multi-sport event in 2013, Indian athletes could afford a moratorium of three to six months, and unite to change the present system."

"I have not heard anything officially, but am told that India has been suspended by the IOC," Indian Olympic Association's president-elect Abhey Singh Chautala told AFP.

"If that is true, it is wrong and a one-sided decision. We will meet tomorrow (Wednesday) to decide our future course of action."

The IOA had been directed by a Delhi court to hold elections according to the government's sports code, while the IOC wanted it to abide by the Olympic charter that favours autonomy.

Elections to the faction-ridden IOA are due to be held on Wednesday, but have become a formality after a rival group led by IOC member Randhir Singh withdrew from the contest last month.

It left tainted sports official Lalit Bhanot elected unopposed as the IOA's secretary-general, while Haryana state politician Abhey Singh Chautala was set to take over as president.

Bhanot is out on bail after being held in custody for 11 months last year over corruption charges during the 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi when he was secretary-general of the organising committee.

The IOC Ethics Commission had in October warned the Indian body against fielding either Bhanot or former IOA chief Suresh Kalmadi -- who is also on bail over corruption charges.

Chautala, known to be a close associate of Kalmadi, blamed his rival Randhir for the suspension.

"When he realised he did not have the majority to win the elections, Randhir used his contacts in the IOC to get at us," he said. "He is the one who has shamed Indian sport and should resign from the IOC."

Chautala added that the IOA had no choice but to follow the government's sports code.

"We had explained to the IOC that we were ordered by the Delhi High Court to follow the sports code," he said. "We could not go against a court order. But we did not get a reply from the IOC."

India's lone individual Olympic gold-medallist Abhinav Bindra said the IOA deserved to be suspended.

"Bye Bye IOA, hope to see u again soon, hopefully cleaner!" Bindra tweeted.

Former athlete Ashwini Nachappa said she was not surprised at the IOC's move. "We all saw it coming," she said. "I hope it helps to clean up Indian sports administration. But will it?"

Woman boxer Mary Kom, a five-time world champion who won a bronze at the London Olympics, said she was "shocked" at India's suspension.

"I am absolutely shocked by this news," she said. "I don't know who is responsible for this, but I know the athletes...will suffer if the situation is not resolved quickly."


The IOC had repeatedly told the IOA not follow the government's sports code for the elections on the ground that it would be a violation of the Olympic Charter and compromise autonomy. But the IOA went ahead saying they were bound by the Delhi high court order.

Suspension meant that the IOA will stop receiving IOC funding and its officials will be banned from attending Olympic meetings and events. India's athletes will be barred from competing in Olympic events under their national flag, but they can participate under the IOC banner.

The IOA top brass said that they were not aware of the decision yet as no communication has been sent to them yet. Sports minister Jitendra Singh said that it was an "unfortunate decision" for Indian sports community.

"Once we knew about the mess we had written to the IOC but they never responded," Jitendra said. The IOA has the option of challenging the IOC's decision in the Court of Arbitration for Sports.

The developments has now put a cloud of uncertainty over Wednesday's IOA elections which has already seen Abhay Singh Chautala being elected unopposed. Scam-tainted Lalit Bhanot had also been elected unopposed as the secretary general.

IOA acting chief VK Malhotra said that they have been pressing the government not to impose the Sports Code on the IOA for the last two years but it has not paid any results.

"We had written to the Prime Minster on November 23 that such a thing could happen but there was no reply. The government is responsible for this," he said.

"We want that the government, the IOC and the IOA sit together and resolve the issue so that the suspension on India is lifted. We had no option but to hold the elections under the Sports Code because of the high court order," he said.

India earns the dubious distinction among a handful of countries which have faced suspension from the world sports governing body.

South Africa had been suspended for its apartheid policy while Kuwait faced the same fate for government interference before it was re-admitted after the Gulf country's Olympic body amended its constitution.

The Netherlands Antilles and South Sudan were also banned for not forming their national Olympic Committees.

The development sparked off outrage among India's top athletes who expressed anguish at the IOC decision. Some of the former athletes like sprinter Ashwini Nachappa and shooter Moraad Ali Khan who blamed the squabbling within the IOA for the fiasco.

The IOC had last week made it clear that it would propose the suspension of the IOA in its Executive Board Meeting if the IOA elections are held under the government's Sports Code.

In a letter written by IOC director general Christophe de Kepper to IOA acting chief VK Malhotra, the world body rejected IOA's request to send an international delegation to resolve the issue and said it would initiate the process of suspending the Indian sports body.

The world body reiterated its directive to the IOA as expressed in its letter on November 23 to present its position to the IOC by November 30 or face suspension.

Malhotra has responded to the IOC's letter in which he has explained the IOA's stand and why it was compelled to follow the high court's order in relation to the polls.

The elections to the IOA have been marred by controversy over the issue of under which framework they would be held and this had led to the resignation of IOA-appointed Election Commission Chairman SY Quraishi and later presidential candidate Randhir Singh withdrawing from the race.

Taking into account Delhi high court's order, the Quraishi-led Commission had ruled that the IOA polls would be held under the government's Sports Code, which in turn, invited IOC's directive to the IOA to "exclusively" apply the Olympic Charter and the IOA Constitution.

Quraishi, a former chief election commissioner of India, then stepped down, citing the backtracking by the IOA to apply the Sports Code. Justice (retd) Anil Dev Singh was appointed by the IOA in his place.

Quraishi's resignation led to the postponement of the elections from November 25 to December 5, but a relentless IOC was not happy with the confusion surrounding the code under which the polls would be held.

Randhir Singh, who is an IOC member and secretary general of both the OCA and the IOA, withdrew his nomination for the post of president, saying that since the world body had said the polls would not be recognised if they are held under the Sports Code, he cannot go against the institution he belongs to.

IOA's position has been that it has been opposing the Sports Code from the beginning but will have to abide by the Delhi high court order to hold the elections under the Sports Code.

Chautala blames Randhir

IOA president-elect Abhay Singh Chautala on Tuesday held Randhir Singh responsible for the national Olympic body's suspension by the International Olympic Committee and demanded the former secretary general's immediate withdrawal from the IOC.

Training his guns at Randhir, Chautala said the IOA executive board will pass resolution in its AGM here on Wednesday, demanding the veteran sports administrator's removal from the IOC.

"From the start to finish Randhir is responsible for the entire mess. To save his chair he can do anything. He should resign first (as IOC member from India) because he has spread all the dirt in Indian sports," Chautala said reacting to IOC's decision to suspend IOA today because of government interference.

"Randhir should withdraw (his membership) from the IOC immediately. In tomorrow's Annual General Meeting of IOA we will demand Randhir's withdrawal from the IOC because he is no longer a member of the executive board of IOA," he said.

"We will pass a resolution to this effect in tomorrow's meeting and then sent it across to IOC." Chautala, who was elected unopposed as IOA president, said the suspension was a "one-sided decision."

"We had written to them, asking them to give some time to our two-member committee to tell them about our position," he said.

"They've not listened to our side. We will go to IOC again and explain to them how elections were carried out here."

Sports Minister Jitendra Singh also termed the IOC's move as an "unfortunate decision" for Indian sports community.

"It is a very unfortunate decision for the sporting community. I still don't know the details but once we learnt about the mess we wrote to the IOC but they never responded," he said.

Sports fraternity irked

The sports fraternity on Tuesday expressed outrage at the International Olympic Committee's decision to suspend India for government interference, with some athletes blaming the IOA for the entire fiasco.

While some former sportspersons were critical of the way IOA handled the whole issue, the current athletes bemoaned the fact that their Olympic participation for the country has been jeopardised.

"Bye bye IOA. Hope to see you soon, hope to see you clean," the 2008 Beijing Olympic gold medallist shooter Abhinav Bindra said in his reaction to the suspension.

Bindra's compatriot and London Olympics bronze medallist rifle shooter Gagan Narang termed the development "unfortunate". "It's unfortunate but I am not too sure about the issue, haven't been following them of late," he said.

Beijing Games bronze medallist boxer Vijender Singh agreed with Narang but hoped for an early settlement of the issue.

"I don't know what has gone wrong. It is an unfortunate development. Elections were to be held under the Sports Code which is similar to the IOC Charter. So, I don't know why the IOC took this step.

"I hope the matter is resolved early so that there is no long-term implication on athletes," the 29-year-old strapping pugilist said.

Five-time women's world champion boxer and another London Games bronze medallist MC Mary Kom was appalled by the development and said it the sportspersons who will have to bear the brunt.

"I am absolutely shocked by this news. I don't know how the matter was handled by the higher authorities. But it is the athletes who will suffer if the situation is not resolved quickly," she said.

The Sports Ministry has sought an explanation from the Archery Association of India (AAI) regarding its recently held polls in which VK Malhotra was elected president for the 10th term.

81-year-old Malhotra becoming the president of the AAI violates the age and tenure guidelines under the Sports Code.

Questioning why AAI has violated the Sports Code during its elections held last month, Sports Ministry shot off a letter dated November 19 to the archery body asking it to explain why the federation should not be de-recognised for violating the Code.

The Ministry gave AAI 10 days to respond to the letter. "The Archery Association is requested to explain as to why the Association should not be de-recognised by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports in the event there is a violation of the Sports Code," the letter had stated.

"Your reply may please be sent within 10 days of receipt of this letter following which the Ministry may be compelled to take suo-motu action without waiting for a reply from the Association," it added.

The Ministry had also urged the AAI to give the age and tenure details of the elected office bearers.

"You are requested to intimate to this Ministry the details of age and tenures held by the various elected office bearers so that the Government may be able to take a decision on the compliance of the orders of the High Court.

The letter also stated that the "report of the Government Observer indicates that a number of office bearers elected in the election held on 19/11/2012 at the Hotel Janpath, New Delhi do not fulfill the criteria laid down in the Sports Code or in the directions of the Delhi High Court".

"The AAI was suppose to conduct the election of its office bearers in accordance with the National Sports Development Code, 2011 as directed by the Delhi High Court dated 15.10.2012 in Civil Writ Petition No. 195/2010," the letter added.

Former IOA secretary general Randhir Singh on Tuesday said that the IOC's decision to ban the Indian Olympic Association gives an "opportunity" to clean the mess, and insisted that the international body is not against the country but against the system.

"The mess that is happening today in the Olympic committee needs to be cleaned up. I think what we are heading for now with this suspension is that it gives an opportunity to clean the mess," Randhir said.

"Let me tell you IOC is not anti-India, it is against the system," he added.

He said the focus should be on the sportspersons. "Let's focus on India. The sportsperson is more important than anybody and to the Olympic movement than to any office bearer.

"We are there for the sportsmen. The administrators must understand that prime person is the sportsperson. He has to be respected and honoured, and not us," the veteran sports administrator added.

Asked about newly-elected IOA president Abhay Singh Chautala's comment that Radhir was resposible for the mess in the sports body, the latter said, "I don't like to discuss anybody. For me fighting for the post doesn't matter. I will move away, tell him also to move away. Let us resign, let us say he is no more.

"He is proclaiming himself as the IOA president on what basis. On an election which the international committee doesn't approve to," he said.

"You have been told that you can't hold this election, and if you hold you are not going to be recognised then which presidentship is he talking about. Which governing body or election is he talking about who are going to pass a resolution against me. It doesn't matter, India is suspended. he should wake up, it's all over," he added.

Randhir suggested that the mess could be cleaned up if the government, IOC and IOA sit together and sort out the matter.

"The IOA has to have the will."

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