A petition against the anointment of N Ramachandran and Rajiv Mehta as the next Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president and secretary general is to be heard in the Delhi High Court on Wednesday.
Chief Justice NV. Ramana is scheduled to hear the arguments by the petitioner Hemanshu Chaturvedi, who filed the Public Interest Litigation on the grounds that these two men cannot lead the Olympic movement in India as the sport that they represent doesn’t figure in the list of 35 disciplines that are affiliated with the International Olympic Committee.
Chaturvedi, who is a founder of ‘Lokdeeksha – a sport law initiative’, has argued that since squash and kho-kho — Ramachandran heads squash’s world body and Mehta is president of the Kho-kho federation — are neither part of Summer and Winter Olympics programme nor is affiliated directly with the IOC, how can these two gentlemen be given the responsibility to lead Olympic movement in India.
Criteria not fulfilled
“I have filed a PIL in the High Court objecting to the office bearers who are being nominated unopposed. Both the office bearers do not belong to the 35 Olympic games. So they are not eligible,” he said.
“Take for example Kho-kho. It is not even in the Asian Games or the Commonwealth Games. It doesn’t appear anywhere. So how can that man take up the Olympic cause? I am also want the court to make a judgment that all state associations should also be represented by people from those games that are part of the 35 sports,” Chaturvedi added.
Ramachandran and Mehta were to be elected unopposed at the Annual General Meeting that is scheduled to be held on February 9 as no opposing candidate filed the nomination papers.