United IOA tones down chargesheet issue

Randhir SinghAbhay Singh Chautala and Randhir Singh, who had been blaming each other for actions that led to IOA’s suspension, joined hands, saying they would work towards getting the organisation reinstated. (PTI)

The Indian Olympic Association tried to paper over the factionalism that has hindered the federation's negotiations with the International Olympic Committee.

Abhay Singh Chautala and Randhir Singh, who had been blaming each other for actions that led to IOA's suspension, joined hands, saying they would work towards getting the organisation reinstated. Sunday's reconvened requisition meeting, chaired by President of Kayaking and Canoeing Association of India S Regunathan, was called to discuss amendments, including IOC's directive to bar charge-framed persons from contesting elections.

But instead, they came up with a show of unity and tasked Randhir, India's representative in the world body, to join the negotiations and break the deadlock.

"There seemed to have been some misunderstanding between the IOC member in India and some IOA members. It was said the IOC member was not taking care of IOA vis-a-vis the IOC. But the misunderstanding has been sorted out," Reghunathan said after the meeting. "Randhir and Abhay Singh Chautala have agreed to work together to resolve the issue of India's suspension."

On Sunday, the IOA once again proposed to refer cases of persons against whom charges have been framed to its Ethics Commission to decide on the merits of the complaints. However, they agreed that "on conviction of an offence... the Executive Council Members/Office Bearers and all members of IOA shall resign immediately and if not they will be excluded and will not be allowed to contest in elections..."

Also, in terms of the age-cap clause, it was decided to restrict it to only the president, secretary general and treasurer as opposed to IOC's directive that calls for inclusion of all IOA members.

The IOA had sent a similar recommendation after the first requisition meeting that was held on August 25, which was rejected in entirety. But this time the officials are confident for a meaningful end to dialogue between IOA and the IOC administrators with Randhir on their side. However, the reconciliation of the factions came as a surprise to many. The proceedings on Sunday meant that Abhay and Randhir, at least in public, tried to project a united stance.

... contd.

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