CHENNAI: The sports ministry is all set to comply with the Delhi High Court order that directed them to constitute a transitory committee to run Archery Association of India by August 23 and hold its first meeting by August 24. This comes a day after the Indian Olympic Association mulled moving Supreme Court against the order as it felt the IOA should be forming the committee and not the sports ministry. This, they felt, could constitute government interference, which is against the IOC charter.
Interestingly, World Archery, which derecognised AAI, too had constituted a five-member committee on Saturday as directed by the High Court. Even that was rejected by the IOA. According to the order, “Consequently, a decision is issued to the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (MYAS), Govt of India to immediately constitute, and in any event not later than 23rd August 2019…”
Since communication has to be sent to the World Archery by August 31 after their first meeting on August 24, the ministry will form the committee as asked by the court on the given date. Irrespective of IOA’s opinion, the ministry is going ahead with constituting the five-member committee headed by former Chief Justice of Jammu and Kashmir BD Ahmad. The ministry will also try fix the issue at the earliest so that archers are not affected.
“We have to comply with the court order and if the HC has asked us to form the committee and convene a meeting, we have to abide by it,” said sports secretary RS Julaniya on Wednesday. “We will try finish everything as quickly as possible and ensure archers are not affected.”
Golf gets three months
The Indian Golf Union seems to have got some breathing space as it is learnt that sports ministry has given it three months to fall in line. Apparently, this decision was taken after IGU officials approached the ministry. Things get complicated as the Indian Olympic Association has already formed an ad hoc committee to look into the day-to-day functioning of the IGU, including selection. The IGU has been violating the National Sports Development Code of India and since last year, they have been facing sanctions.
Despite facing de-recognition, the golf body even went ahead and selected a team on August 9 to represent India at the Nomura Cup in Hong Kong. The last extension of four months got over on June 30 this year. Ideally, the extension should begin from the date it expired. If things are not sorted out soon, they may not represent India in November. They will also not be eligible for government grants and assistance.
The ministry feels though they technically cannot interfere in the selection process, they can withdraw recognition and stop funding. IGU will not be able to use India in tournaments. The ministry has been quite livid with the IGU for not following the NSDC. Not just elections and electoral college but also the exclusivity of their clubs has been a concern.
Julaniya said any federation that doesn’t follow the sports code will have their recognition withdrawn. “All government assistance — from funding to training - will be lost. We are monitoring IGU closely. If they don’t follow the sports code, they cannot use India when they participate in international events.”
EFI review not over
The Equestrian Federation of India’s recognition is yet to be ascertained. The EFI had written to the ministry asking for a review of its recognition as it was getting over on August 3. However, as of now, no decision has been taken because of the peculiar nature of the sport.