Indian Olympic Association president Narinder Batra has cast doubts over the prospects of winning medals from Tokyo Games after Sports Ministry’s decision to de-recognise 54 National Sports Federations (NSF) earlier this week. Also Read - Sports Ministry Moves Delhi High Court Seeking Restoration of Provisional Recognition to 57 NSFs
The Ministry, acting on the direction of Delhi High Court, provisionally withdrew the recognition granted to the NSFs on Thursday. Also Read - IOA Infighting Should End For The Good of Indian Sports: Rajeev Mehta
Batra says he’s in touch with the sports ministry officials and is hopeful of the issue getting resolved at the earliest. Also Read - IOA President Narinder Batra Appeals Officials And Members to Shun Infighting
“I am in touch with the concerned people in the sports ministry. Keeping in mind preparations for 2021 Olympics and if all goes well, I am hopeful of all these issues getting resolved in next two to three weeks,” Batra was quoted as saying by IANS.
On Friday, Batra had said there will be implications of the ministry’s decision and it will directly impact the training camps for the Tokyo Olympics slated to be held next year.
“We are looking at the implications of it, I don’t know whether the [training] camps can start or not,” Batra told ANI. “How will the government fund [this] and this is the decision regarding NSFs, what has been banned in court and what permission has to be taken from court? And if day-to-day permission is required then we have a serious problem and I don’t think we should then look for any medal in 2021 Olympics because no preparation can happen.”
Batra said the Indian athletes may end up competing under IOA flag if the recognition isn’t granted.
“I can’t predict what High Court will say, last time also de-recognition happened on the same ground. There was an order from court to hold the election as per sports code and IOA had refused it. The [International Olympic Committee] works on different principles,” Batra said.
“And if they get any complaint from any federation that we (the NSFs) are not working and if they ask me as IOA president, I will have to tell what the actual position is and you might be going under IOA flag in 2021 Olympics and not under the Indian flag,” he added.
While Batra said they will respect and abide by what the court aid, athletes will eventually suffer.
“There are elite sports related to NSFs who are Olympics bound or World Cup or any other events. But as of now, no event is taking place. However, in some months it will resume and if an athlete says he/she will participate in a World Cup and didn’t get the permission from here and it is delayed for some reason, then the athlete will have to face a two-year ban for not participating in that event after confirmation,” he said.
He continued, “But we will have to respect what the court says and abide by it. But I think the situation is today is a complete mess and I don’t know what is going to happen and if such things will continue for a bit longer period then do not look for double-figured medals.”