Why appoint a 90-year-old as secy? Sports Minister asks NRAI

New Delhi: Apparently not happy with the appointment of 90-year-old Col (Retd) Jaswant Singh as `honorary` secretary of the National Rifle Association of India, Sports Minister Jitendra Singh has sought an explanation from the NRAI on the move.

It was reliably learnt that Singh yesterday spoke to NRAI president Raninder Singh on the issue of appointing the veteran shooting administrator to the post, and asked him to explain the reasons for making such a move.

"The sports minister asked him (Raninder) to explain why did he appoint a 90-year-old to the post. The NRAI president tried to do a bit of explaining. It seems the minister was not too impressed with the move," a source close to the NRAI told PTI here today.

In a surprise move, the NRAI, during its governing body meeting on December 23, appointed Singh who also served as the association`s secretary-general in the `70s and `80s.

The NRAI defended the move saying that it`s only an "honorary post given to someone who has served the federation for many years" with distinction.

The move comes at a time when the government is pushing all the national sports federation to implement its sports code.

As of now there is, however, no confirmation of whether the NRAI would withdraw the proposal of appointing Singh as one of the six secretaries.

Though his appointment is not a direct violation of the sports code as only the principal office-bearers -- president, secretary, treasurer and the vice presidents -- of national sports federations come under its purview, it certainly reflects how the NRAI views the code.