BHUBANESWAR: In a move that has surprised many, Hockey India (HI), the apex body of Indian hockey, has formed an ad hoc committee to manage hockey in Odisha. It also nominated Bhola Nath Singh as the chairman of the committee.
Singh is currently president of Jharkhand Hockey Association.
Interestingly, Olympian and legend Dilip Tirkey has been nominated as the athletic representative in the ad hoc panel.
In this context, HI wrote a letter to the Odisha Olympic Association (OOA) president Jagmohan Pattnaik on June 7 and requested to nominate a representative of the OOA to the ad hoc committee as a member.
The announcement has taken Hockey Odisha, the association from the State, by surprise.
“Without terminating the existing Hockey Odisha, it is hard to comprehend why HI formed an ad hoc committee,” said Hockey Odisha secretary Pratap Satapathy.
Hockey Odisha is one of the founder members of HI and registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1960.
It has its own registered by-laws, which provides the manner of the election of the office-bearers, he added.
In the past, the Hockey Odisha men and women teams have won many titles in different national tournaments.
The State has produced players like Dilip Tirkey, Lazrus Barla, Prabodh Trikey, William Khalko, Jyoti Sunita Kulu, Birendra Lakra, Dipsan Tirkey, Deep Grace Ekka, Namita Toppo and Lilima Minz.
Satpathy said, the unconditional support of the Odisha government to Indian hockey is incomparable with any other state.
Simultaneously, with the guidance of the State government, the State’s hockey association has helped produce many male and female players for the country, he added.
The Hockey Odisha secretary said, HI is not in a position to host any national-level tournaments which is why it is unfathomable what was the emergency to create an ad hoc committee that is truly “unconstitutional.”