Indian boxing federation banned over elections

NEW DELHI Fri Dec 7, 2012 1:40pm IST

India's Manoj Kumar walks to the ring for his fight with Turkmenistan's Serdar Hudayberdiyev in the Men's Light Welter (64kg) Round of 32 boxing match during the London 2012 Olympic Games July 31, 2012. REUTERS/Murad Sezer/Files

India's Manoj Kumar walks to the ring for his fight with Turkmenistan's Serdar Hudayberdiyev in the Men's Light Welter (64kg) Round of 32 boxing match during the London 2012 Olympic Games July 31, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Murad Sezer/Files

Related Topics

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - The Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) has been suspended by the International Boxing Association (AIBA) for "possible manipulation" of its elections, in the wake of a wider Olympic ban that has left sports in the Asian country reeling.

The IABF amended its constitution ahead of its September election to create the chairman's post to accommodate Abhay Singh Chautala at the end of his 12-year reign as the federation president.

That paved the way for his unopposed election as president of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) on Wednesday, a day after the IOC banned the body for allowing government interference in its poll.

Even though the AIBA suspension is a direct fallout of the Olympic ban, the Indian boxing federation's September election is now under investigation.

"This provisional suspension is also due to the fact that AIBA had learned about possible manipulation of the recent IABF's election," the governing body of amateur boxing said in a statement.

"AIBA will now investigate this election and especially a potential political link between IOA President, as former Chairman of the IABF, and the IABF election."

Compounding the pressure, India's sports ministry also announced on Friday that it had suspended the IABF, effectively cutting off the sport's government funding.

Indian boxing federation chief Abhishek Matoria claimed the AIBA suspension had come from out of the blue, but conceded the global governing body had enquired about their elections.

"It's a big, big shock for all of us," Matoria told Reuters on Friday.

"They suspended us without giving us a chance to explain. They did write a letter to us alleging 'malpractice' in election but never specified.

"We sent them a detailed explanation, point by point and I have no idea why they still suspended us.

"I can assure you we would do everything to make sure our boxers don't suffer. We'd approach AIBA and even IOC is required to revoke the suspension."

The AIBA ban is a massive blow to Indian boxing, whose fighters were making regular podium finishes in international events.

"I am really disappointed with this suspension. This is bad news for Indian sportspersons," Vijender Singh, who won India's first Olympic boxing medal at the 2008 Beijing Games, told NDTV channel.

"I want to continue representing India in future but this news will affect the morale of the Indian boxers.

"The next AIBA event is quite far away but hopefully we would not sit on it for too long and get the suspension revoked as soon as possible."

(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; editing by Patrick Johnston/Ian Ransom)

FILED UNDER:

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Oil Prices Fall

Oil Prices Fall

Brent near four-year low after OPEC decides against output cut  Full Article 

Banking Sector

Banking Sector

India says considering plan to reduce stake to 52 pct in state banks   Full Article 

Islamic Fund

Islamic Fund

India gets new Islamic equity fund but debt market still off-limits  Full Article 

SAARC Summit

SAARC Summit

Summit salvaged after handshake by leaders of India, Pakistan  Full Article 

Social Media

Social Media

Twitter to start tracking users' mobile apps  Full Article 

Forever21 in India

Forever21 in India

Forever21 sets sights on Indian cities, but please hold the hot pants  Full Article 

Japan Economy

Japan Economy

Japan inflation slows in October, output and spending show signs of recovery  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device  Full Coverage