Archery‘s world body has de-listed the Archery Association of India (AAI) as a member and given it a month’s time to either get its house in order or face suspension. World Archery said it will wait till July 31 before deciding on AAI’s suspension. WA will wait for the Supreme Court’s verdict on the controversial elections of the AAI. The decision to de-list AAI will not prevent Indian archers from taking part in international events under the national flag in competitions for which entries have already been made. “(World Archery) Executive Board has decided that there is sufficient evidence that the AAI is in breach of Articles 126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52.1. of the World Archery Constitution and Rules and, specifically, the last bullet point of 184.108.40.206.1 Article requiring good governance,” a two-page decision of the WA accessed by PTI said.
“As a result India is not listed as Member Association since currently there are as far as World Archery is concerned no legal representation. World Archery will monitor until the July 31. The EB will then re-examine the situation based on the outcome (of the court’s verdict),” it said. As of now, the final entries have already been made for the Berlin Archery World Cup Stage (July 1-7) and Tokyo Olympics Test Event (July 11-18), while a preliminary entry of 24-member squad has been made for the Madrid World Archery Youth Championships (August 19-25). The WA directed the constitution of an ad-hoc panel made up of representatives of the India Olympic Association, the Sports Ministry and “one representative of the two factions” of AAI to handle transitional matters concerning Indian archery, including selection of archers for international events, and to hold elections at a neutral place.
The committee will be chaired by an IOA member. The WA’s decision was taken in an Extraordinary Executive Board Meeting at Den Bosch in the Netherlands on June 14 on the sidelines of the World Championships. “If at the end of July there is no clear decision, World Archery will suspend the Archery Association of India and will not allow any Indian athletes to participate at any World Archery event with national team participation. This would particularly apply for the Asian Archery Championships and Asian Para-Archery Championships,” it added. The letter signed by WA secretary general Tom Dielen was sent late on Monday to Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju and IOA president Narinder Batra.
The world body declared the two separate elections of the rival factions of the AAI as invalid and delisted the national federation. “None of the two elections is considered as valid for what concerns World Archery and World Archery will not accept either Presidents or Secretary Generals as legal representatives of the AAI. “World Archery takes notice of the Hon Supreme Court decision that the two elections called for had to be held and that the Court will rule on the outcome of the two elections,” it said. The WA also debarred the two rival factions of the AAI from making any modifications for entries as of June 17, regarding various international events.
“The WAREOS account for making modifications for entries and member management will be deactivated as of the 17th June and until further notice. “As a result, India is also not listed as Member Association since currently there are as far as World Archery is concerned, no legal representation.” The WA said a selection panel consisting of IOA secretary general, a representative of Sport Ministry and an independent person will have to be formed to select the Indian archers. “Any change of the current entries for Berlin and the Tokyo Test event will only be accepted if submitted by the IOA,” the WA said, demanding a clarification from AAI assistant secretary Gunjan Abrol for making a change to the team on June 10, ahead of the World Championships.
The WA said it took the decision after receiving a full report from Kazi Rajib Uddin Ahmed Chapol, who was appointed by World Archery as a Mediator and Observer following the meeting with the two Congress Delegates from AAI and correspondence received prior to Congress. WA had threatened AAI of immediate suspension and also tried to intervene by sending Chapol as the “mediator” to have an unified election.
But all the talks to bring the two factions together failed as both groups went ahead with separate but simultaneous elections in New Delhi and Chandigarh on June 9 to elect two presidents — Union Minister Arjun Munda and retired IAS officer BVP Rao.
Rao was elected AAI president last year, ending the era of Vijay Kumar Malhotra since 1973, but he had to quit after the Supreme Court gave a ruling for fresh elections and set aside the AAI constitution amended by Delhi High Court-appointed administrator S Y Quraishi.