New Delhi: Indian Olympic Association’s president-elect, Abhay Singh Chautala demanded the resignation of incumbent secretary general Randhir Singh for misleading the International Olympic Committee (IOC) over the election process for his own interest.
“Randhir Singh had on a daily basis issued the threat that IOC will impose a ban on IOA if it follows the government’s sports code. I would like to ask him why was he in a hurry to conduct the elections in October when our demands were to hold it in December.”
“It was because of this attitude all sorts of confusions have arisen. Otherwise, things were going on smoothly. The election process was as per Randhir’s notification. He wanted early elections to the NOC. Since he was completing his four-year term, he wanted the polls to be held at the earliest. But the AGM wanted it in December. Subsequently he only issued the notification regarding the elections,” Chautala said.
Chautala said, as an IOC member, Randhir’s responsibility was to resolve the issue with the international body but he chose to make the matters worse by forcing them write various letters, including the threat of derecognising IOA.
“His pullout drama citing violation of IOC charter was an afterthought because he knew he was losing the elections. That is why he sought the help of IOC and forced them write various letters, including the threat of derecognising/ disaffiliating IOA.”
“We want his immediate resignation as the whole mess has been created by him for his own interest. He cannot be representing the NOC as per the IOC charter,” said Chautala.
Jharkhand Olympics Association President and eminent lawyer R K Anand said that according to 3.7 of the charter, any member ceases to be an IOC member, the moment his tenure in NOC comes to an end, which has happened today with the election of a new secretary-general following the official intimation from the three-member Election Commission.
Chautala said he was hopeful of an early solution to the problem confronting the IOA in the wake of objections raised by the IOC.
“A nine-member delegation including me today met with the sports minister Jitendra Singh who assured us to resolve the issue amicably. We would soon inform you about the positive news that the IOA and the government have resolved the issue with the IOC.”
“There have been reports that the IOC will ban IOA if our elections were held under the sports ministry’s code. I would like to inform you here that V K Malhotra has decided to write a letter to the IOC and send a two-member delegation to Lausanne to apprise the international body of the current situation. The delegation will inform the IOC that the elections are taking place in a fair and transparent manner. It’s happening in a democratic way,” he said.
Chautala said they had a fruitful discussion with the Sports Minister.
“We apprised the minister of all matters and he gave us a patient hearing. We also requested him to find a solution to the raging debate over IOC’s periodical letters. He assured us that after discussing the matter he will revert back to us,” he said adding that the minister assured them of doing everything possible to sort out the issue quickly.
Asked about the sports code, Chautala said their meeting with the sports minister was all about the contentious issue.
“I am hopeful things would be sorted out soon. In any case, it is a matter for the government to clarify its position and that IOA had nothing to do with it.” He thanked the IOA/state unit members for their support.
“I assure you all that there will be greater transparency in the working of IOA and that will be our priority,” he said. The press conference at Chautala’s residence was attended by Tarlochan Singh, Anand, B P Bhaishya, G S Mander and Kuldeep Vats.