The Sports Ministry on Thursday gave six months to all National Sports Federations (NSFs), except for five who were handed relaxation of one year, to amend their constitutions and align them in accordance with the National Sports Development Code to be eligible for government’s recognition. The five NSFs who were given one year time period due to their “special nature” are yatching, equestrian, polo, motorsport and Special Olympic Bharat. The decision was taken during a virtual meeting between Joint Secretary (Sports) L Siddhartha Singh and representatives of NSFs.
During the meeting, Singh told the NSFs that compliance to the provisions of the Sports Code is binding on the federations.
“…and they should not only follow the provisions outlined in the Sports Code in managing their affairs to the extent the Sports Code provisions are applicable, but also take immediate steps for making requisite amendments in their constitutions/bye-laws so that they are in sync with the Sports Code,” a Sports Ministry release stated.
“…the Federations have been given time of 6 months except in case of 5 NSFs, who have been given a time period of one year due to the special nature of the 5 sports, to align their constitutions/bye-laws with Sports Code.”
The Sports Ministry official also made it clear that NSFs will be given no further extension thereafter. He also reiterated that failure to comply with the Sports Code by any NSF would lead to de-recognition of the concerned federation.
The NSFs have also been asked to furnish information with regard to compliance of the Sports Code provisions on fortnightly basis to the Ministry, so that the Hon’ble Delhi High Court is also apprised of the same. The Sports Code has been mired in controversy with several NSFs and the IOA, opposing its age and tenure cap regulations for office-bearers before finally coming around in the last couple of years.
Interestingly, the Sports Ministry on Monday issued a circular stating that the power to relax provisions of the Sports Code, will lie with it while deciding on grant of recognition to federations and the management of the IOA.
That circular was also issued by L Siddhartha Singh, stating that the government has decided to add the relaxation clause provision in the National Sports Code 2011 to assist promotion of sports. The Ministry’s power to relax the Sports Code will cover “renewal of recognition of NSFs on annual basis and governance and management of Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and NSFs, as a special exemption where considered necessary.”
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