'Showcause notice' adds further drama to IOA fight

'Showcause notice' adds further drama to IOA fight


Association officials term leaked notice ‘fabricated and illegal’

New Delhi: The bitter turf war in the Indian Olympic Association took a dramatic turn on Sunday with the release of a showcause notice to the sacked CWG Organising Committee chief Suresh Kalmadi by the body’s disbanded Ethics Commission and four office-bearers later countering it as “fabricated and illegal.”

On a day marked by allegations and counter-allegations, a showcause notice dated December 6, 2011 issued by the Ethics Commission was leaked out to the media. The Ethics Commission in question was disbanded by IOA General Body in its meeting on December 15.
“...this is to issue a show-cause notice against all the three of you namely, Mr Suresh Kalmadi, Mr Lalit Bhanot and Mr VK Verma to show cause as to why your membership from Indian Olympic Association and National Sports Federation should not be cancelled,” the notice to Kalmadi stated.

“Till the matter is, however, disposed of by this Ethics Commission it is hereby to issue an order of suspension from further acting as president, associate vice-president and joint secretary, being office bearers of Indian Olympic Association or even to enter the premises of Indian Olympic Association until further orders passed by this commission in any other way connected therewith and until further orders passed by this Commission,” it added. However, the commission was disbanded a few days later and a new one was constituted after a hue and cry was raised over the move.

Later in the day, four office-bearers of the IOA issued a release rubbishing the reports of a show cause notice and sought an inquiry by the acting president V K Malhotra into the matter.

“We are shocked to learn of the news of suspension of Mr Suresh Kalmadi, Member of Parliament, from the presidentship of the IOA by the Ethics Commission of the IOA in some sections of media. This is a totally baseless and mischievous report, far from truth and facts,” the release said.

The release was signed by two IOA Joint Secretaries — Rakesh Gupta and S M Bedi — and two executive body members in Rajeev Mehta and Anandeshwar Reddy.
“The Ethics Commission has not held even one meeting till date, as such there is no question of taking any action as reported. Even otherwise no such action can be taken without issuing showcause notice and in this case no such notice has been issued to anybody. Needless to say no report of such commission was placed before IOA General Body for ratification,” it said.

The leaked notice has been rejected by the IOA with a source close to Malhotra saying that no communication from the Ethics Committee has come to them. But the leak is being seen as an attempt to build pressure on Kalmadi to step down by the faction opposed to him.
“A new ethics commission has been formed recently and the rules are being framed. The new commission is the one which has constitutional authority and the rules are being framed,” the official said.

The IOA drama has not gone unnoticed for the International Olympic Committee. The IOC has threatened to refer the case to its Ethics Commission at any moment, should the action taken by the National Olympic Committee (NOC) does not have a satisfactory implication.