IOA calls HI-IHF merger `bizarre live-in’

New Delhi: Calling the working agreement between Hockey India and the Indian Hockey Federation a "bizarre live-in relationship", IOA acting President Vijay Kumar Malhotra said two federations for one discipline will never be accepted.

"We don`t want to open a Pandora`s box which will lead to total chaos in Indian sports," Malhotra said in a statement.

After a marathon eight and half hour meeting yesterday among HI, IHF and Sports Ministry officials, it was agreed that the two bodies will work under an arrangement which will continue till December 2012. However, there was no merger between the two bodies.

Emphasising that the IOA (Indian Olympic Association) will only recognise one federation for one game, Malhotra said, "Unless a unified body is formed to run hockey, it will not be acceptable."

"IOA will never accept two co-chairpersons for one federation. This is not feasible and workable," he said.

Lashing out at the Sports Ministry, the president said the agreement was a blatant act enforced by Sports Minister Ajay Maken as he wanted to earn some brownie points.

"In his bid to be seen as a minister in action, he has become minister in distortion," Malhotra said.

"How can two separate entities run a single sport?" he asked, adding that the sports ministry should have pondered over it before hailing it as a "significant way forward".

Stating that the IOA is disturbed with the current agreement as it will destablise sports in the country, Malhotra said, "As per the agreement, IHF and HI will continue fighting the court cases, and will have their own executives.”


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