Ahead of IOA elections, proposal to increase members’ perk

In the run-up to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) elections, the first since 1996 when there is bound to be a contest, campaigning has begun in full swing and sops are being offered.

Secretary general Randhir Singh, who is likely to contest for the post of IOA chief — a position to which Suresh Kalmadi has been unanimously elected to since the mid 90s — in a letter dated October 5 has proposed to increase the travel allowance and dearness allowance of members, which in turn means members can now fly instead of traveling by train.

The proposed plan is part of the supplementary agenda at the IOA's special general body meeting schedule to be held on October 18.

"To approve new rates for payments towards TA/DA, board and lodging of the members attending meetings of IOA executive committee, emergency executive council, general assembly and special general assembly with immediate effect," the letter written by Randhir outlining the agenda says.

However, Randhir's proposal has its critics too.

"This is would be a total waste of money but I can understand why members will not oppose it. This is a hike in allowances, one which many will happily accept. But it is not morally right to plan this and not in these times when our accountability has been questioned on so many occasions," said an executive committee member.

The new plan is set to increase IOA expenditures significantly. Under the new voting pattern, which was amended in Ranchi in January, 2011 and subsequently approved by the special AGM on June 13 in New Delhi, the number of representatives of national sports federations at IOA meetings have been increased from one to three and for state bodies from one to two.


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