CHENNAI: Days after the Equestrian Federation of India (EFI) announced they would hold elections on September 29 during their Annual General Meeting (AGM), some of the state units of the EFI have written a representation to the sports ministry and the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) seeking their intervention on the matter.
They have written to the IOA and sports ministry because they believe that the parent body is in violation of the sports code. A letter to this effect was sent by a New Delhi-based law firm and addressed to Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju, sports secretary Radheshyam Julaniya, IOA chief Narinder Batra and IOA secretary general Rajeev Mehta. “We have been retained and instructed to file this present representation on behalf of the members and representatives of the states’ Equestrian Associations (...) in order to bring to your notice, the non-compliance and persistent breaches of the National Sports Development Code of India (...) by the EFI.”
The trigger for the letter was EFI announcing the poll dates. “(...) the EFI has now belligerently announced elections to the Executive Committee to be held on 29.09.2019 in accordance with its statutes which are not in compliance with the Sports Code.”
The 51-page representation, a copy of which is with this daily, goes into some detail about the way in which the EFI falls foul of the sports code. A major bone of contention is to do with how they have allocated voting rights to individual members. It is learnt that some of the state units might even boycott the elections because they believe their presence and nominations could lead to potential validation of elections.
What happens next? Sports lawyer Vidushpat Singhania, who represents the state units (complainants), feels there is merit in their argument. “We need to give ministry and the IOA time to respond to our representation,” he said. While he didn’t specify on the timeframe, they ‘will move Delhi High Court’ if no response is forthcoming.