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Why Pullela Gopichand has nothing to say? asks Jwala Gutta

Jwala said she is surprised that India's chief badminton coach Pullela Gopichand is still silent.

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Published: October 25, 2013 5:28:47 pm

Embattled shuttler Jwala Gutta said she is surprised that India’s chief badminton coach Pullela Gopichand is still silent on the proposed life ban on her by BAI for an alleged disciplinary breach.

“I am really surprised why the chief coach is quiet. Why he has nothing to say?,” asked Jwala.

“Former coaches like Arif sir and Vimal sir have spoken out. Vimal sir was the coach of Banga Beats,he also came out with his statement. If they can speak out,why can’t the chief coach?

“I mean he is not just the coach of his academy but of the whole country. He can tell me that Jwala what you did is wrong but he should take a stand. Why is he not commenting?,” she added.

The Delhi High Court on Friday declined to grant stay on ongoing inquiry proceedings by a committee set up by the Badminton Association of India (BAI) against ace shuttler Jwala for alleged indiscipline.

The Hyderabadi shuttler,who is currently in Paris playing in the French Open,said the issue is affecting her performance.

“I try that such things don’t affect me but I am also a human being and it harasses me. All these are there in the back of my head,things which are happening in India,” she said.

Asked if she has the support of her fellow shuttlers,Jwala said they are not openly voicing their support because they are scared of being victimised themselves.

“I understand that my fellow Indian team members cannot voice their support openly because they are scared of themselves getting victimised. I am happy Ashwini (Ponnappa) stood by me,” she said.

Following a disciplinary committee’s recommendation for a life ban on Jwala on charges of indiscipline,a three-member committee was constituted earlier this month to evaluate the report and submit it within a month.

The committee had issued a show cause notice to Jwala on October 14 and she approached the High Court challenging the notice and soughting a stay on its proceedings against her.

However,the court said no interim order is required as the court has already granted relief to her by asking BAI to allow her to participate in the national and international tournament. The court granted her two weeks time to respond to the committee’s show cause notice.

The court had on October 10 stayed the BAI’s decision not allowing her to take part in any international tournament in or outside the country in view of the disciplinary committee’s recommendation for life ban on her.

The BAI’s disciplinary committee has recommended a life ban on Jwala for allegedly trying to stop some players of her franchise Krrish Delhi Smashers from playing a match against Banga Beats in the Indian Badminton League in August.

A controversy had erupted during the August 25 tie when Delhi Smashers had allegedly threatened to pull out against Banga Beats over the last-minute replacement of injured singles player Hu Yun of Hong Kong with Denmark’s Jan Jorgense.

‘Concentrate more on sending players overseas,not officials’

Players should get precedence over officials when it comes to attending tournaments overseas,the Bombay High Court said on Friday,while directing the Badminton Association of India to fund the participation of player Prajakta Sawant at a tournament in Bahrain if it was funding the participation of other players.

he order by division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice M S Sanklecha came on Sawant’s petition alleging that BAI’s selection committee,headed by chief national coach Pullela Gopichand,sidelined her because she was not from Gopichand’s own coaching academy.

“Sports associations should concentrate more on sending players than officials. We direct respondent 4 (BAI) to pay the expenses for the petitioner’s participation in the Bahrain Challenge to be held from November 6 to 9….the expenditure shall be borne only if BAI is bearing expenditure of other India players in the tournament,” the court said.

Sawant had earlier accused Gopichand of mental harassment after she was refused entry at national coaching camp in Hyderabad. Gopichand promoted players from his academy,she had alleged.

The High Court in March this year directed the BAI to accept Sawant’s application to participate in the tournaments that were to be held in May and June. The court also asked the Maharashtra government to consider giving some financial aid to her,following which the government gave her Rs 3 lakh and she participated in a few international tournaments


Sawant moved the court again last month levelling allegations against the selection committee and questioning the ranking method.

“Till March 2013 I was on rank 3 but soon after that I dropped to sixth rank. Players like Ashwini Ponappa,Pradnya Gadre and others who have been selected in the Indian core team do not even pass the second round in tournaments,” her petition said.

BAI lawyer Nimay Dhave argued that Sawant’s ranking dropped as she did not perform well in the last year. He also stated that BAI was not funding any of the players for the Bahrain tournament.

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