Quit IOA posts or be ready for ouster: HC to Kalmadi, others

New Delhi: Sacked Commonwealth Games organising panel chief Suresh Kalmadi, facing trial in a string of the 2010 games-related graft cases, was today warned by the Delhi High Court to either quit as Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president or face the court's action against him.

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri issued similar warnings to two other IOA officials Lalit Bhanot and V K Verma, who too are facing trial in the CWG-related graft cases along with Kalmadi.

"We would like to know whether Kalmadi exits gracefully or court will issue show cause notice to him as to why he should not be discontinued as President of IOA," the bench said.

The court's warnings came in form of its notices to them on a plea by advocate Rahul Mehra alleging that Kalmadi and other IOA officials have been violating the National Sports Development Code of India as their terms are over and they were likely to contest the election due in October this year.

The court sought the replies of Kalmadi and others by April 25.

Contending that Kalmadi was not eligible to contest elections for the post of IOA president as he has been holding it for over 18 years, advocate Mehra said the Union Sports Ministry's guidelines mandated a person to continue as IOA President only up to 12 years and barred him from contesting the election for more than three times.

The bench also asked two other IOA office bearers Verma and Bahnot, who have completed their eight years in service, to respond on the issue while making it clear that if they continue to hold the office, a show cause notice will be issued to them.

Appearing for the IOA, senior counsel N K Kaul submitted that Kalmadi has written a letter to the organisation that he would not interfere with the affairs of the organisation as he has been facing the trail in a corruption case relating to CWG 2010.

Mehra's petition alleged no action has been taken against the three IOA office bearers, who were in Tihar Jail and had written letters to the sporting body saying they would join the meetings later.

The petitioner told the court that there should be a procedure to remove such alleged tainted persons from the sporting body.


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