NEW DELHI: While the South Asian Archery Federation (SAAF) had decided to bar Indian archers from participating in the upcoming 13th South Asian Games, there is still a chance that a team can be sent after the Transitory Committee wrote to World Archery (WA) regarding the same.
SAAF members in a meeting in Dhaka last month had decided to not allow Archery Association of India (AAI) archers from taking part in Nepal on account of the federation being suspended by the world body. The minutes of the meeting are in possession of this daily.
“Indian Archery Association has already been suspended by the World Archery from participation in all international and regional tournaments. The board decided to adhere to the directive given by the WA in the participation of Indian archers in any competitions registered under World Archery,” the members concluded after the meeting.
The decision was conveyed to the Indian government and the Indian Olympic Association (IOA). The 13th edition of the regional event starts from December 1 and will go on till December 10. The Transitory Committee, in charge of AAI affairs till elections, has written to WA president Tom Dielen to seek his urgent intervention in this matter. In the letter, in possession of this newspaper, the body has mentioned that there is no strict instruction regarding banning Indian archers from international competitions.
“This is in regard to the Indian Archery team’s participation, which has been approved by the Transitory Committee of Archery Association of India. However, it has been brought to our notice that a resolution has been passed by the SAAF not to permit the Indian Archers to participate in the forthcoming 13th South Asian Games... But, to the best of my knowledge and understanding, there was no such restriction imposed on the Indian team by the World Archery.”
It is expected that WA will rule favourably as the election procedure has already been started. WA’s decision is expected late on Tuesday or early Wednesday, following which the names of the archers will be sent and the visa process will be started.
“WA should support us as the poll process has started even though it is delayed. Our plan is to send a B team if approval comes and the young archers will get invaluable exposure,” a source close to the committee informed. The letter has also been marked to the various members of the committee as well as the WA and IOA secretaries.
Under WA flag
The upcoming Asian Championships, which also serve as Olympic qualifiers, will see Indian archers competing under the WA flag. However, in case, the women’s recurve archers bag an individual quota, the Transitory Committee is trying to convince the WA of keeping the quota place with India. Medals, if won, will remain under the WA flag.