India lost the hosting rights for the 2021 men’s boxing World Championships after the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) failed to pay the host fee. The International Boxing Association (AIBA) said that additionally, the BFI will now have to pay a cancellation fee of $500. The quadrennial tournament will now be hosted by Serbia and AIBA Interim President Mohamed Moustahsane said that it will hold the World Championships after the postponed Tokyo Olympics next year. Also Read - Dingko Singh, Asian Gold Medallist Boxer, Dies of Cancer
“After New Delhi didn’t fulfill its obligations to pay host fee as mentioned in the Host City Agreement terms, AIBA has terminated the contract. Therefore, India would have to pay a cancellation penalty of USD 500,” the AIBA said in a statement. Also Read - Video: Undefeated Boxing Great Floyd Mayweather vs Youtube Star Logan Paul Trading Blows In Exhibition Match
The Boxing Federation of India acknowledged the delay but blamed it on “procedural complications” arising out of the AIBA’s failure to resolve “issues” with regards to the account in which the money was to be transferred. Also Read - Asian Boxing: Shiva Thapa Assures India of Medal
The payment of what is estimated to be USD 4 million was due to be made on December 2 last year.
The elite competition, which would have happened for the first time in the country, will now be held in the Serbian city of Belgrade.
“Serbia has everything to organize a great event for athletes, coaches, officials, and, of course, for our boxing fans,” AIBA Interim President Mohamed Moustahsane stated.
The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) is headed by Ajay Singh, who also owns Spicejet Airlines. AIBA has been suspended by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for financial mismanagement.
“AIBA account in Lausanne was frozen. AIBA intended to have some previous payments through an account in Serbia. As Serbia is in the Grey List of Financial Action Task Force (FATF countries), Indian Banks do not normally send money to Serbia. AIBA could not resolve these issues,” read a statement from BFI to PTI.
“…we have reasons to believe that the decision to change the venue of WCH-2021 was taken in haste without due consultation with BFI…the penalty that is imposed is shocking and surprising.
“…both parties are working for an amicable solution. BFI is confident that the penalty will be waived off and we will host World Championships in future,” it added.
(With Agency Inputs)