Rahul Mehra. (TOI Picture)
NEW DELHI: Supreme Court docket lawyer and sports activities activist, Rahul Mehra, on whose public curiosity litigation (PIL) the Delhi Excessive Court docket ordered the withdrawal of provisional annual recognition granted to 54 nationwide sports activities federations (NSFs), alleged Thursday that the sports activities ministry and Indian Olympic Affiliation (IOA) have paid the worth of their very own sheer ignorance and arbitrariness in whimsically deciding the destiny of the nation’s NSFs.
“That is one thing they’ve introduced upon themselves due to their sheer conceitedness, the double converse and arbitrariness of their decision-making. The ministry has opted to take the ostrich route the place they’d discover it handy to go along with full power and might need the nationwide sports activities code’s violation in opposition to specific federations whereas leaving the remainder. For instance, the Rowing Federation of India (RFI) was de-recognised by the ministry as a result of it had three votes per state associations. And the Code permits two votes per affiliation. The identical anomaly was there within the structure of the Fencing Affiliation of India (FAI). Now in fencing, the ministry didn’t de-recognise it as a result of it is headed by IOA secretary normal, Rajeev Mehta. It nonetheless falls in that 54 NSFs’ class which had been provisionally granted recognition. Sports activities minister (Kiren) Rijiju may be very cozy with the IOA’s prime brass and he doesn’t need something in opposition to any of the IOA office-bearers. The ministry didn’t de-recognise fencing, however for a similar irregularity, it de-recognised rowing. That is the form of arbitrariness they comply with of their decision-making,” Mehra alleged.
“Final 12 months, a number of NSFs have been de-recognised and ad-hoc our bodies have been created by IOA president Narinder Batra. Parallel our bodies have been created by Batra. I introduced it to the discover of the Excessive Court docket in my case that there appears to be a brand new modus operandi within the IOA the place they’re really blaming the worldwide federations (IFs) when IFs are least bothered about what’s taking place nationally. The true agenda was to change the vote financial institution politics of the IOA as a result of these individuals needed their very own cronies to vote in favour of them. I urged the courtroom that any determination taken on the subject of NSFs must be first positioned earlier than the courtroom for its blessings. It was essential for the reason that ministry and the IOA have been turning blind eye. The order from the courtroom got here in ‘Para 6’ of the February 7, 2020 order in my petition, which acknowledged you (ministry) should come again to the courtroom to hunt its permission (earlier than granting recognition to NSFs). On June 2, 2020 and June 16, 2020, the ministry filed two affidavits within the courtroom, stating that due to the courtroom’s February 7 order, we’ve come to tell the courtroom that the ministry has taken this determination to provisionally grant annual recognition to 54 NSFs and prolonged it until September 30, 2020. I replied to those two affidavits saying it’s all hogwash. Initially, the ministry shouldn’t have executed this (grant provisional recognition). They need to have first come to the courtroom, positioned the fabric earlier than the courtroom and earlier than taking the choice, ought to have allowed the courtroom to resolve. The ministry couldn’t have unilaterally taken a call. That was in opposition to the letter and spirit of the order,” he acknowledged.
Mehra knowledgeable that the two-judge bench of the courtroom, Justice Hima Kohli and Justice Najmi Waziri, admitted that the ministry side-tracked from its February 7 order and it was nothing in need of a contempt of courtroom. “The minister is operating the ministry which is totally defunct. It’s for the minister to examine in a really diligent method that the choices aren’t taken unilaterally. If there’s a violation of the sports activities code throughout the board, then the matter have to be handled within the strictest method in opposition to anybody who’s a defaulter. If the ministry does that and runs the organisation impartially, I’ll withdraw my case tomorrow. The ministry can come again to this courtroom with applicable functions and make case for themselves,” he added.