New Delhi: Wrestling Federation of India to challenge suspension in court

New Delhi: Wrestling Federation of India to challenge suspension in court

Newly elected chief calls EC meeting on January 16

New Delhi : A defiant Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) will challenge its suspension by the Sports Ministry in court next week and has also called for an Executive Committee meeting here on January 16 to discuss the way forward. Citing violation of the National Sports Code and the WFI constitution, the government had suspended the newly-elected body on December 24, three days after the Federation conducted its election.

The WFI has maintained that it neither accepts the suspension nor does it recognise the ad-hoc panel that has been constituted by the IOA to manage the day-to-day affairs of the sport. “We need a properly functioning Federation. We are taking the matter to the court next week. This suspension is not acceptable to us because we were elected democratically. We have also called the Executive Committee meeting on January 16,” WFI President Sanjay Singh told PTI. Singh, who hails from Varanasi, reasoned how the ad-hoc panel was not equipped to deliver in crunch time.

“You have seen how the team for the Zagreb Open was announced. Five weight categories will go unrepresented. This will happen in the absence of a proper Federation. If certain wrestlers were unavailable in their respective categories, then why were their replacements not sought?

“Never ever in a tournament, when the federation was in place, we let India go unrepresented in any weight category. And what was the logic in picking the same team that competed in the Asian Games. There are other contenders as well. “I have been getting calls from wrestlers who thought they were worthy of a place in the Indian team. They said they could have made the team if they were given a fair chance to prove themselves through trials. That is why you need a proper federation in place,” he said. Meanwhile, a WFI source revealed that the notice for the Executive Committee was issued on December 31. One of the points in the circulated agenda is to “explain define and interpret certain provisions of the constitution.”

The circular clearly mentioned, citing the constitution, that the President “shall be chief officer of the WFI. He shall be empowered to call meetings of the council and executive, if he deems proper.” It may be mentioned that the ministry had objected to the non-involvement of the secretary general in the December 21 General Council meeting of the WFI.

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