IOC wants fair and transparent polls in IOA

Elections to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) later this month must be fair and transparent to allow the world's second most populous nation to tap its sports potential, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said on Thursday.

"Top priority for the IOC is integrity," IOC Vice-President Thomas Bach told Reuters when asked what his organisation expected from the Nov 25 vote in New Delhi.  "Therefore a fair and transparent campaign for the presidency of the IOA is essential," said Bach.

"Only with the leadership of integrity can the IOA play the deserved important role in world sports and exploit the huge potential of sports in India," said Bach, who is seen as a possible candidate for the IOC presidency next year. India won two silver and four bronze medals at the London Olympics, the country's biggest Olympic haul and equal to the collective tally of previous seven campaigns.

The frontrunners for the top job at the IOA are Indian Amateur Boxing Federation's (IABF) Abhay Chautala and IOA secretary general Randhir Singh.

Randhir, an IOC member since 2001, has been untarnished by the Commonwealth Games fallout while Chautala is a politician and his brother Ajay heads the Table Tennis Federation of India.

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