The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has revoked the decision to appoint scam-tainted former chiefs Suresh Kalmadi and Abhay Singh Chautala as its Life presidents.
In a letter to the Ministry of Sports dated January 9, IOA President N Ramachandran claimed that the national Olympic body has not passed any resolution to honour the controversial duo.
“In the Annual General Meeting held in Chennai on 27.12 2016, at the fag end of the meeting a point was raised by a member stating that IOA should nominate 2 Life Presidents,” Ramachandran said in the letter addressed to Sports Secretary Injeti Srinivas.
“As no notice in writing was received (within) at least seven clear days, as per the constituition clause VII (h), no resolution was put to vote and passed,” he said.
Ramachandran said that members could make proposals in a meeting but if it did not meet the provisions of the IOA constitution, it could not be assumed that the proposal had been approved and passed in the meeting. “In the view of the above, since the proposal was not in accordance with the constitution, the inconvenience and embarrassment caused to the individuals concerned, members of IOA and to all is sincerely regretted,” Ramachandran said.
Moreover, the appointment of Kalmadi and Chautala has been declared “null and void” in order to not just get the recognition from Ministry but also to avoid any possible action from the IOC.
The IOA’s decision to appoint Kalmadi and Chautala as Life Presidents invited severe criticism from various quarters with the sports ministry issuing a show-cause notice before suspending the deemed recognition of the national Olympic body.
Following the suspension, the IOA has ceased to enjoy the privileges and prerogatives bestowed on it by the government as the National Olympic Committee (NOC). All government assistance, financial or otherwise, to the IOA has also been stopped.
Meanwhile, Sports Secretary Injeti Srinivas said with the IOA deciding to take a u-turn, its suspension also stands cancelled. “We welcome the IOA’s decision that it has gone by its constitution. Our statement on the suspension clearly states that it will be lifted the moment IOA reverses the decision. That has happened and we welcome it,” Srinivas said.
“I have seen media reports that Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has cancelled the appointment of Shri Suresh Kalmadi and Shri Abhay Singh Chautala as lifetime Presidents of IOA. I am happy that IOA has reversed its decision which augurs well for governance of sports in the country,” Sports Minister Vijay Goel said in a statement.
“By reversing their earlier decision, which appears to have been taken in a hurried manner, IOA has complied with its own constitutional obligation and also with conditionality approved by International Olympic Committee (IOC). In the renewed circumstances, we look forward to partnering with IOA in making India a sporting Nation,” he added.