IOA to get poll panel chief today

The new chairman of the Election Commission of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) will be appointed  on Monday.

IOA acting president Vijay Kumar Malhotra said on Sunday he would name the person to fill in the position left vacant following the resignation of chairman S Y Quraishi on Saturday.  The new dates for the election process are also expected to be announced on Monday.

The scrutiny of the nominations which were to take place on Saturday for the November 25 elections had to be stopped after Quraishi resigned following a letter from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) that sought adherence to the Olympic Charter in the conduct of the elections.

Quraishi, according to Malhotra, wanted to hold the elections under the Sports Code of the Government of India.

Meanwhile, IOA secretary-general Randhir Singh, in a letter to Malhotra on Saturday, has questioned his  authority to appoint any new election commission members.

Randhir stated Malhotra was authorised to set up election commission in the General Body meeting on October 18 and such an authorisation had been exhausted. “Such a Commission was appointed by you and hence the authorisation given to you has now been exhausted having outlived its mandate,” Randhir, who is also an IOC member, said.

Randhir also pointed out the ambiguities surrounding the elections and stressed on an “urgent need” to file an application to seek a clarification from the Delhi High Court.

The IOC on November 15 had written the letter to the IOA asking it to hold the elections as per IOA constitution and the Olympic Charter while the returning officer issued a circular on November 5 to the effect that government sports code must be adhered to.

The Delhi High court ruling, meanwhile, directed holding of the election as per the IOA constitution as well the government sports code.

Randhir went on to caution that an “improper or negligent handling of the present situation may well lead to the disastrous consequence of de-recognition of the IOA by the IOC.”

It has also been learnt that the IOC has sent another letter to the IOA and the Election Commission members  insisting that elections should be conducted as per provisions in the Olympic Charter and the IOA constitution.

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