IOA chief blames ad­min­is­tra­tor for archery mess

Mail Today - - OTHER SPORTS - S. Kan­nan in New Delhi

IN­DIAN Olympic As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Narinder Ba­tra launched a scathing at­tack on the ad­min­is­tra­tor in charge of the Archery As­so­ci­a­tion of In­dia (AAI).

A day af­ter the sports min­istry wrote a strong let­ter to the AAI ad­min­is­tra­tor SY Qu­raishi, Ba­tra said the “sport is go­ing to suf­fer in the long run at home”.

“I have no hes­i­ta­tion in say­ing the ad­min­is­tra­tor has messed it up. He was ap­pointed by a court but he is be­ing con­trolled by an ac­tivist lawyer,” said Ba­tra.

As one who has fought huge bat­tles in In­dian sport, no­tably when the In­dian Hockey Fed­er­a­tion was be­ing run by su­per­cop KPS Gill, Ba­tra fears the day is not far when the In­dian archery fed­er­a­tion will get dere­cog­nised by the world body.

“We are not the BCCI, to be con­trolled the Lodha panel rec­om­men­da­tions. The Na­tional Sports Fed­er­a­tions in In­dia be­lieve in trans­parency and good gov­er­nance. We are will­ing to go by what the courts say but this draft con­sti­tu­tion of the AAI has not been drafted by the ad­min­is­tra­tor. This is not at all cor­rect,” added Ba­tra.

The IOA pres­i­dent, also pres­i­dent of the FIH (in­ter­na­tional hockey fed­er­a­tion) said archery in In­dia has the po­ten­tial to win a medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

“This ad­min­is­tra­tor has no idea about the sport. I won­der if these peo­ple want to kill the sport?” asked Ba­tra. Re­mind­ing sports lovers at home about the cri­sis six years ago when the In­ter­na­tional Olympic Com­mit­tee (IOC) sus­pended the IOA, Ba­tra said: “One has to fol­low the laws of the land and also keep in mind the IOC char­ter. You have to re­spect what the in­ter­na­tional body is say­ing. Do we want In­dian archery to get sus­pended and even­tu­ally the archers com­pete un­der the IOC flag in Tokyo?

“When the IOA was sus­pended six years ago, it was a painful phase. The process of get­ting recognition back took time. I firmly be­lieve the AAI should fol­low the na­tional sports code of 2011 and hold the elec­tions,” Ba­tra sug­gested.

IOA chief Narinder fears AAI will be dere­cog­nised by the world body soon.

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