Follow IOC order, Randhir tells IOA

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) member in India, Randhir Singh, has said the suspended Indian Olympic Association cannot continue to be confrontational with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and should follow the directions of the world body for the sake of athletes.

The IOC in a tersely–worded communication following its meeting in Buenos Aires earlier this month had made it clear to the IOA that it needed to follow all its demands to lift its suspension, including the clause barring individuals against whom charges are framed by a court.

The IOA had refused to accept the clause which bars such individuals from contesting the elections. It instead offered an alternative as per which the ban will apply on those convicted over two years and more.

“The decision by the IOC executive board was unanimous. You cannot continue carrying confrontations with the IOC. First they held the elections despite IOC’s warning, and then they had problems with amending of the constitution. The IOA is not realising the gravity of the matter. This is no way. They should accept what the IOC is saying,” Randhir, who attended the meeting at Buenos Aires, told Deccan Herald on Wednesday.  Randhir slammed the IOA officials and said they needed to look beyond themselves to solve the issue.

“If someone needs to step aside to solve the matter, then he should do that. If it was me, I would have stepped aside. Can’t a country of 1.2 billion people find 20-30 people who could run sports administration? The IOA instead are just bothered about their own positions in the organisations. At least they should first amend the constitution and get it cleared,” he said.

Athletes’ plight

With the Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games less than a year away, Randhir, who was the secretary-general of the suspended IOA, said it was the athletes who were suffering. “It has become a joke. The Indian athletes are suffering,” he said.

It has been learnt that IOA officials are reaching out to each other to form a consensus on taking the next step and will be deciding on holding a meeting within a week’s time.

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