Sport Ministry asks BAI chief to divulge details of election

New Delhi: The upcoming elections in the Badminton Association of India today came under the scanner of the Sports Ministry which has asked its chief V K Verma to divulge details of the June 13 General Body Meeting (GBM) and the election process.

In a letter, Joint Secretary (Sports), Srinivas Injeti said after BAI intimates the Ministry about the details of the GBM and election process, it may depute an observer for free and fair conduct of the elections.

“We have received intimation from a few member units of BAI that the General Body meeting and elections to BAI are being held on 13.06.2010. As per the government guidelines, all recognised NSFs are required to intimate Government well in advance about its General Body Meeting and other meetings where election of office bearers and other important decisions are taken,” Srinivas said in the letter.

“Further, wherever considered necessary, the Government will have the right to send its observers to the above meetings. Please note that we are yet to receive any intimation about the holding of General Body and Elections from BAI,” he wrote.

Srinivas asked Verma to send the Ministry all relevant papers pertaining to the election process and also details of the returning officer, along with list of nominations and contestants.

“If it is true that elections to the office bearers of BAI are being held on 13.06.2010, please send immediately to the Ministry all relevant papers, including copies of the election notice, name and contact details of the returning officer, schedule for filing/withdrawing of nominations, list of contestants for each post, details of the election process, including venue,” he wrote.

“Please note that the cardinal principles of fair and democratic elections, viz, clean electoral list, list of contestants published in advance, appointment of an independent returning officer and secret ballot would be most essential for the government to accept the election results.”

On Saturday, former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin announced that he would contest BAI’s upcoming elections, a move which may have been prompted by the Sports Ministry’s recent guidelines on tenure limitations.

The ministry recently laid down guidelines stipulating a maximum tenure of 12 years for presidents of sports bodies, apart from other caps.

The guidelines have been dismissed by the federations, even as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has warned that the country could face a suspension for transgressing the Olympic Charter.


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