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Ministry wakes up late to de-recognise IABF

New Delhi: The ministry of sports, on Tuesday, de-recognised the Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) after waiting nearly 15 months for the national federation to hold its elections.

The IABF is already in deep trouble after being thrown out of the world body for “possible manipulations in its elections.”

“The ministry has decided to de-recognise the boxing federation, which has not held its elections despite reminders,” said a ministry official, admitting the verdict was greatly influenced by the world body’s (AIBA) decision to terminate IABF’s membership.

The official, however, said the government and the Sports Authority of India (SAI) would continue to support the boxers for international meets and all youth development programme.

The ministry decision, some felt, should have come much earlier since the government ordered the IABF to hold its elections within 15 days in December 2012.

While suspending the IABF, the sports ministry, on December 7, 2012, said: “A notice will be sent to the IABF to confirm that they will hold fresh elections under independent supervision within a period of 15 days failing which the de-recognition will be made absolute.”

A senior Indian Olympic Association (IOA) official, however, expressed surprise over the ministry decision and called it “ill-timed”.

“In two days, the IOA would be holding a meeting, in which the boxing federation problem would be discussed. The ministry could have waited for a couple of days before de-recognising the IABF,” he said.

IOA sources said it was planning to form a committee to look after the selection of the Indian boxing teams for the Asian Games and the Commonwealth Games.