HC orders probe into non-selection of shuttler Prajakta Sawant

PTI| Updated: Nov 13, 2013, 20:33 PM IST

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Wednesday asked Sports Authority of India and the Union Government to conduct an inquiry to find out why badminton player Prajakta Sawant was not picked up in the Indian team for international matches.

The court also asked for an inquiry into the selection process of Badminton Association of India (BAI).

The order by division bench of Justices Mohit Shah and M S Sanklecha came on a petition filed by Sawant alleging that BAI`s selection committee, headed by chief national coach Pullela Gopichand, was biased against her.

The HC wanted to know why Sawant was not selected for recent international fixtures in spite of her ranking going up from six to two.

The SAI and the Centre have been asked to complete the probe by November 21 and file a report before the High Court. The next hearing is on November 22.

Sawant, in an earlier petition, had accused Gopichand of mental harassment after she was not selected for National Coaching Camp in Hyderabad. She had also alleged that Gopichand promoted players from his own academy.

The High Court, in March this year, had directed BAI to accept Sawant`s application to participate in the tournaments that were to be held in May and June.

BAI had submitted that Sawant`s performance was not up to the mark.

However, the court had then sought to know BAI`s response to the allegation that only those from Gopichand`s academy were being picked for national sqaud. The court had also asked BAI to file an affidavit about the performance of selected players.