FIH chief Narinder Batra files nomination papers for post of Indian Olympic Association president

Narinder Batra's candidature was on expected lines though initially there was some uncertainty over whether he would contest for the post of the president.

PTI November 27, 2017 16:46:27 IST
FIH chief Narinder Batra files nomination papers for post of Indian Olympic Association president

New Delhi: International Hockey Federation president Narinder Batra has filed his nominations for the post of the president of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) weeks ahead of its general body meeting (AGM) on 14 December.

FIH chief Narinder Batra files nomination papers for post of Indian Olympic Association president

File image of Narinder Batra. Image courtesy: International Hockey Federation

The upcoming AGM will elect a new set of office bearers for the country's apex sports body.

Batra has filed three sets of nomination papers with a proposer and seconder each. IOA secretary general Rajeev Mehta was one of the proposers of Batra while treasurer Anil Khanna was one of the seconders. Khanna was earlier considered as one of the possible candidates for the top job.

Interestingly, Batra has also filed another three sets of nomination papers for the post of senior vice-president.

The deadline for filing nomination papers for the various posts is 2 pm on Tuesday and the list of the persons who have filed nominations will be put up at 5 pm.

Batra's candidature was on expected lines though initially there was some uncertainty over whether he would contest for the post of the president. But it was cleared after the Returning Officer appointed by the IOA to conduct the elections ruled that office bearers and members of the Executive Council elected in 2012 and 2014 can contest for the post of president and secretary general.

Batra, now 60, was one of the vice-presidents from 2012 to 2014, but he was not a member of the executive council that was elected in February 2014 when India returned to the Olympic fold after a ban of 14 months.

Incumbent president N Ramachandran has decided not to seek a re-election.

The IOA has also called for a special general body meeting (SGM) on 29 November to "discuss and interpret" the eligibility criteria for election to the post of president and secretary general ahead of the 14 December polls. But with the RO, SK Mendiratta, having issued a notice on the same matter, the SGM may now accept his ruling when the members assemble on November 29.

"The election of the office bearers and members of executive council of the IOA would be held as per the Memorandum and Rules and Regulations of IOA amended upto 8.12.2013 and election bye-laws," Mendiratta, an advisor to the Election Commission of India, said in the notice.

"For the purpose of clarification, it is made clear that the office bearers and members of the Executive Council elected in AGM in 2012 and 2014, both are entitled to contest for the posts of president and secretary general," he added.

Earlier on 8 November, the International Olympic Committee has told the IOA in a letter to hold the elective General Assembly in accordance with the Olympic Charter and the IOA Constitution currently in force, as approved by the world body.

The international parent body has said that the election process should be conducted by an independent Election Commission in line with the election bye-laws established for the last IOA elections in 2014.

The IOC also said that in the event of any doubt as to the interpretation and/or implementation of the IOA Constitution, the matter will be referred to the General Assembly for a final decision, as clearly mentioned in Article XXXI (e) of the IOA Constitution.

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