IOA refuses to recognise Boxing India, its prez slams AIBA

IOA refuses to recognise Boxing India, its prez slams AIBA

Indian Olympic Association today rejected Boxing India's application for recognition as the national federation, with its president N Ramachandran saying that BI was "imposed" by the world body AIBA against the wishes of the IOA.

Ramachandran told a press conference after the Annual General Body Meeting of the IOA here that it still recognises the erstwhile Indian Amateur Boxing Federation, whose affiliation was terminated by the AIBA early this. The Sports Ministry had earlier derecognised the IABF.

Today's decision of the IOA will lead to a bizarre situation where one boxing body is being recognised by its parent international body while another body is being recognised by the national apex sports body.

"Boxing issue was discussed at length at the Executive Council Meeting and it was unanimously agreed that the body for boxing in India and the body that is recognised by IOA is IABF. It is the AIBA which has recognised Boxing India and their elections. Neither the government nor the IOA sent any observer for their elections. We already have a recognised body IABF," Ramachandran said.

"There were disputes and IOA constituted an ad hoc committee but subsequently AIBA recognised Boxing India. It was imposed and they (AIBA) said BI will hold their elections. IOA took up the matter with AIBA President, we said elections should be held under the aegis of IOA with AIBA observers present. AIBA did not accept these suggestions and BI held their elections under supervision of AIBA," he added.

Ramachandran slammed the AIBA for taking a "unilateral" decision on the elections concerning a national sports federation.

"When an election to a national sports federation is being held in India, the National Olympic Committee should be involved. More so when there is a dispute between two groups. Shutting out IOA and taking a unilateral stand is not good for any sport. Today, it is boxing and tomorrow it can be some other sport. Autonomy of IOA prescribed in its constitution cannot be compromised under any circumstances," he said.

"An international federation cannot tell IOA that we do not like this X, bringing in Y in its place. You cannot force a National Olympic Committee, those days are gone."

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