Lawyer-activist Rahul Mehra on Monday moved an application in the Delhi High Court seeking the court’s intervention to direct the Union Sports Ministry to form an ad hoc body to run sports affairs in the wake of the suspension of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
The court issued notices to the Union Sports Ministry and the IOA and fixed the next date of hearing for January 14.
Moving an interim application in the court of Chief Justice D. Murugesan and Justice R.S. Endlaw which had been hearing a slew of petitions from Mehra related to various National Sports Federations (NSFs) and the IOA, the petitioner sought the intervention of the court to protect the interests of the athletes.
Mehra suggested a 15-member ad hoc body to be formed by the ministry including Olympic medallists Abhinav Bindra and Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, snooker player Yasin Merchant, former international athlete Ashwini Nachappa, who is also the working president of Clean Sports India, former Chief Justice of Delhi High Court, Justice A.P. Shah, former Infosys Chairman N.R. Narayna Murthy and industrialist Anand Mahindra.
The panel, as suggested, may also have the Secretary of the Sports Ministry, P.K. Deb, and an IOC representative. The panel which could be functional between three and six months, as per the plea, would be expected to report to the court.
Mehra said he had obtained the consent of all the members suggested in his application. The panel would also be expected to open communication channels with the IOC and hold discussions with it to revoke the suspension order.
Mehra’s plea against a restrictive clause in the IOA constitution that he had brought to the notice of the court before the IOA elections were held here on December 5 last, and his plea to annul the elections are also scheduled to come up at the next hearing.