Hockey India claimed that the International Hockey Federation (FIH) recognises it as the sole representative of the game in the country.
According to a letter written to HI Secretary General Narinder Batra, his FIH counterpart Peter L Cohen reiterated that hockey’s revival in India continues to remain the world body’s prerogative.
“Hockey India is and remains the sole governing body for hockey, men and women, in India and thereafter Hockey India is administered in accordance with its statutes as approved by the FIH,” Cohen wrote in the letter, which was supplied to the media by the HI.
“The interests of FIH are to see Hockey India fully constituted and operating in accordance with its statutes so that the sport in India will develop and flourish. FIH has no desire to penalise anyone, least of all the players,” he added.
However, Cohen took a dig at HI for expressing its inability to conduct the much—awaited elections before May 31 and said FIH cannot grant any further extension as requested by the Indian body.
“I note your advice that the date for the elections of the board of Hockey India is set for July 5, 2010. This is well outside the deadline previously advised to and approved by FIH. The FIH is very disappointed that the May 31 deadline cannot be met. You have asked FIH to extend the May 31 deadline but this FIH cannot do,” he said.
When contacted FIH communications manager Arjen Meijer refused to comment on the issue.
“We won’t make any comment at this moment because we are looking into the matter,” he told PTI.
The controversial Hockey India elections has run into a bad weather since its declaration and has been postponed thrice due to legal hurdles and other issues.
The election were supposed to be held last year, but were pushed back to January 29 after HI failed to give a mandatory 21—days notice to the Sports Ministry for the same.
It was again deferred to February 7 because of a stay order from the Rajasthan High Court after which the FIH set the May 31 as the final deadline.