‘Office-bearers damaging sport’
Furious with the current logjam in the suspended Indian Boxing Federation, the International Boxing Association has terminated the IBF from its fold stating that the current set of office-bearers are “damaging the image, reputation and interest” of the sport.
In a tersely-worded statement, the AIBA said it is not in a position to make a “proper” judgement on how to handle India’s case after receiving conflicting communications from various stakeholders.
The boxers and coaches will, however, continue to remain unaffected by the development and can participate in international events under the AIBA flag till the time the crisis is unresolved.
“It is with much regret that the International Boxing Association (AIBA) Executive Committee (EC) has decided to end any official relationship with its current suspended member, the Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) after an extensive evaluation and assessment of all issues surrounding the sport of boxing in India,” the world body said in its latest missive.
AIBA president Ching Kuo Wu said the IBF is unlikely to be re-recognised till the time a new set of officials take charge after fresh elections, the screening of candidates for which would be done by the world body.
“As AIBA president and on behalf of the entire boxing family, I am expressing my deepest regret and sadness that we had to make this decision,” stated Dr. Wu.
“AIBA has always regarded India as one of the most important members of its family, but it has become impossible for us to bear the hard feelings, the pain and suffering the boxers as well as the boxing family in India had to go through under the past and recent leadership which has also been damaging the image, reputation and interest of our sport in the country,” he added.
Sources said the latest AIBA diktat is the result of a letter sent by IOA Secretary General Rajeev Mehta in which he sought to persuade the body to recognise the present set of IBF office-bearers. The request was not taken kindly by the AIBA, which decided to terminate India.
After provisionally suspending the IBF on December 6, 2012, AIBA has not recognised any official activities and did not support the Indian officials for almost 16 months.
However, AIBA promised to review the situation when the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) had its suspension lifted by the IOC.