India faces Olympic ban with Lalit Bhanot set for IOA role
NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Tainted former Commonwealth Games official Lalit Bhanot was left as the only candidate in a controversial election for the post of secretary-general of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) which is likely to earn the country an Olympic ban.
Bhanot, who spent 11 months in custody last year following corruption charges that plagued the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi and is out on bail, was confirmed for the post late on Friday after the rival faction pulled out ahead of Wednesday's election.
Boxing federation chief Abhay Singh Chautala is also set to be elected unopposed for the IOA president's post and his immediate job would be to convince the International Olympic Committee (IOC) not to suspend the body he hopes to head.
Irked by the government interference in the election process, the IOC has said it will propose a suspension at its executive board meeting next week.
The IOA has been directed by a Delhi court to hold the elections under a controversial government sports code, while the IOC wants it to go by its own constitution and the Olympic charter.
Chautala and his IOA colleagues met sports minister Jitendra Singh on Friday and is optimistic of avoiding the IOC suspension.
"We appraised the minister all matters concerning elections and he gave us a patient hearing," Chautala said in a statement.
"We also requested him to find a solution to the raging debate over IOC's periodical letters (warning the IOA). He assured us that after discussing the matter he will revert to us," Chautala said.
The IOA chief defended Bhanot's selection saying the official has not been declared guilty yet.
"Until the court decides he is guilty, there is no restriction on him fighting elections," Chautala said.
(Editing by Patrick Johnston)
- Tweet this
- Share this
- Digg this
- Google's Pichai to oversee major products and services
- Modi takes tea, but no questions, in first press event as PM
- UPDATE 2-Motor racing-Caterham and Marussia to miss next races - Ecclestone
- Two killed, four wounded in Washington state school shooting
- Finance Minister Arun Jaitley favours interest rate cut - paper
The latest Reuters poll of 20 economists taken over the past week shows Asia's third-largest economy will likely grow 5.5 percent this fiscal year and 6.4 percent the next, slightly better than 5.3 percent and 6.3 percent expected in the July poll. Full Article
Euro zone risks "relapse into recession" without structural reforms - Draghi. Full Article
Kalki Koechlin on her role as a disabled girl in “Margarita, With a Straw” Full Article