HI loses Govt. recognition

Taking strong exception to the tone of the Hockey India reply to a show cause notice issued to it, the Union Sports Ministry on Thursday withdrew the provisional recognition extended to the hockey body.

Citing legal arguments in its favour, the government, in a letter by Under Secretary Shankar Lal, said it was taking the action because HI had violated government guidelines as well as openly declared that it was a private body beyond “Writ jurisdiction and the government's regulatory powers.

“Government hereby withdraws with immediate effect the provisional recognition granted to Hockey India.”

The government pointed out that HI was recognised under “very compelling circumstances” even though it was an “instantly made NSF (National Sports Federation) that had no “legitimate track record of promoting, developing and regulating the sport in India. The very fact that it was promoted by the IOA (Indian Olympic Association) contradicts the present claim of HI of being a private body.”

The government also dismissed the HI claims that the circumstances that prevailed at the time of its recognition persisted even today.

“In the light of the judgement of the Hon'ble High Court of Delhi the IHF (Indian Hockey Federation) has been declared as the sole NSF for hockey in India, a point that both IOA and HI have unequivocally accepted before the Hon'ble Court.”

The letter stressed that, “the Government has today (Aug 5, 2010) received a confirmation from the President of the Indian Hockey Federation that the Government guidelines for recognition for NSFs are acceptable to them. The IHF have further confirmed initiation of the process for unification of men and women's hockey at the national level in compliance with the requirements of FIH.

“The other contention that Government recognition was merely a ministerial act and HI derived its monopolistic powers and privileges on the strength of the recognition granted to them by the IOA and the FIH was also untenable,” said the letter.

“As per the Government guidelines, no NSF can represent the country without Government recognition whether or not it receives Government grants.”

The government concluded, “With regard to other contention that the matter is subjudice, it may be stated that the issue of Government recognition is not sub-judice.

“Moreover, HI on its own has discarded the Government recognition. The Government is only making it formal now by issuing an order to that effect.”

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