Millennium Post

Relief finally! IOC to lift ban on India

The International Olympic Committee, after a meeting with Indian sports officials in Lausanne on Wednesday, agreed in principle to draw a roadmap to bring the nation back in the Olympic fold. The meeting, which assumed great importance for India’s sporting future, has worked out the exact details and the timeframe to get the ban lifted. The ban was imposed on 4 December for India’s failure to adhere to the Olympic charter.

Sports minister Jitendra Singh, who’s heading the delegation, said, ‘We had a very positive and fruitful meeting with IOC chief Jacques Rogge. We have found a roadmap to get India into the Olympic fold. The ban will be lifted through a process. All age and tenure restriction rules have been agreed to.’

IOC also issued a statement elaborating on the salient points covered during the meeting, which it described as fruitful. ‘The main purpose of the meeting was to explore the possibilities of IOA holding free, fair, democratic and transparent elections on the basis of a revised IOA constitution and the Olympic charter without any outside interference  that could pave the way for IOC to consider lifting its suspension,’ the statement read.

IOC also said the sports minister had given guarantees and a clear commitment that the government will fully respect the principle of autonomy as mentioned in the Olympic Movement.  IOC had decided to ban India after IOA failed to comply with the Olympic Charter and also allowed a tainted official to contest elections for a top post. A day after the ban was imposed, IOA went ahead with the elections under the government’s Sports Code, defying IOC’s diktat to hold polls under the Olympic Charter. IOC then declared the elections ‘null and void’ besides directing those elected to not discharge any official duties. The world body also asked the National Sports Federations to distance from the Abhey Singh Chautala-led IOA.
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