'Bring facts on non-selection of Paralympian for Tokyo'

Bring on record latest facts on non-selection of 5-time Paralympian for Tokyo games: HC tells PCI

On August 2, the Supreme Court had directed PCI to immediately include Sharma as an additional participant for the sporting mega-event in Japan

 Representative image. Credit: iStock Photo

The Delhi High Court Friday granted time to the Paralympics Committee of India (PCI) and Naresh Kumar Sharma to bring on record the latest facts concerning the non-selection of the five-time Paralympian shooter for the upcoming Tokyo Games which are scheduled to begin from August 24.

“Put on record facts after the Supreme Court order – email of respondent no 1 (PCI) to World Shooting Para Sports (WSPS) and reply of WSPS”, said a bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh as it opined that these developments “would go to the root of the case”.

 Advocate Varun Singh, representing Sharma, urged the court to expeditiously decide the issue in view of an order passed by the apex court and said, “whether I or Deepak (the other player) can go can be deliberated upon in view of the favouritism (shown by PCI)”.

In response, advocate Mahavir Rawat, appearing for PCI, stated that the last date for sending names for the Indian contingent has passed and the concerned international body has already rejected Kumar's name as an additional candidate for the shooting event.

Rawat added that there could be no allegations of bias against PCI over the selection of another player as the process is based on scores and not discretion.

“This is not like cricket selection. This is a mathematical selection. Whoever gets more marks goes,” Rawat explained.

On August 2, the Supreme Court had directed PCI to immediately include Sharma as an additional participant for the sporting mega-event in Japan.

The next day, after being informed that "Tokyo has refused to allot additional slot", the apex court had granted liberty to Sharma to approach the high court for expeditious consideration of his plea against non-selection.  

On July 27, the high court's single-judge order had said that PCI's conduct in relation to the selection of another player over Sharma for the R-7 shooting event was unbecoming of a public sporting body which has to maintain a fair, transparent and inclusionary approach.

The court had, however, refused to interfere with the selection of the other player over Sharma at this belated stage, noting that the shooting team was already in a bubble.

It had however asked the Union Sports Ministry to examine the aspect and take action, if necessary.

On July 30, the bench headed by Chief Justice Patel had sought responses of the PCI and the Centre on Sharma's appeal against its single-judge order, following which Sharma had moved the apex court.  

The matter would be heard next on August 10.