New Delhi: The cracks within the suspended Indian Olympic Association (IOA) were more visible than ever when the extraordinary general meeting of the body was held at a five-star hotel in the capital on Sunday.
Touted as a meeting that would pave the way for India’s return to the Olympic fold, it opened without its acting president Vijay Kumar Malhotra. Malhotra did not turn up, alleging that he was never consulted on the whole issue.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) had suspended the IOA in December 2012. “I did not attend deliberately. I am the IOC-recognised acting president of the IOA, but no one consulted me on the meeting,” said Malhotra, also the president of the Archery Association of India (AAI).
In the absence of Malhotra, the president of the Indian Kayaking and Canoeing Association, S Raghunathan, presided over the meeting.
Meanwhile, Abhay Chautala, who was heading the suspended IOA, claimed Malhotra was consulted on the matter. “Malhotraji had full knowledge of the meeting,” he said.
The National Rifle Association of India NRAI) president Raninder Singh was barred from attending the meeting after Raja Sidhu, IOA joint secretary, questioned the NRAI’s participation when it had a court case pending against it.
Raninder, is known to be of the Randhir Singh camp.
KPS Gill, advisor to Indian Hockey Federation, who practically objected to everything that was proposed, refused to eat during the lunch break saying he would rather not take food with some questionable characters around.
Senior Congress leader and judo federation president Jagdish Tytler said the meeting was a mockery when it came to accepting the IOC suggestion to bar the charge-sheeted officials.