Delhi HC notes ‘sorry state of affairs’ in table tennis federation


Noting the ‘sorry state of affairs’ in the Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI), the Delhi High Court on Friday directed to appoint an administrator to run the apex table tennis body while dealing with a plea filed by table tennis player Manika Batra’s allegation of a match-fixing attempt by national coach Soumyadeep Roy.

While observing the report of the earlier-assigned committee’s report, the single-bench of Justice Rekha Palli said the report showed that TTFI safeguarded the interests of its officials.

The court noted, “instead of promoting players, TTFI is dictating terms”. The country takes pride in its sportsperson and people who do not understand how players are to be treated “should be out”, it said during the course of the hearing.

A detailed copy of the order is expected to be made in this regard later.

The bench had earlier constituted a three-member committee to look into Batra’s allegation of a match-fixing attempt by the national coach.

The court had expressed concern over the serious nature of the allegations, in which the country’s top-ranked player contended that the national coach “pressurised” her to “throw away” an Olympic qualifier match in favour of one of his trainees.

Batra had knocked the doors of the court seeking her inclusion at the Asian Table Tennis Championship, which was to be held at Doha from September 28, while also seeking the scrutiny of the conduct of the TTFI is not selecting her for the Asian Championships.

Pointing out the inquiry committee appointed by the Centre, the court said while it made observations concerning certain aspects of the sports body, it failed to consider Batra in its inquiry, remarking that nobody wants to stand by the sportspersons when they are in trouble.

The court had also asked TTFI to give a clean chit to Batra, who had approached the court against the selection process of the apex table tennis body.

The judge observed that there was no question of misconduct from the player’s side, and noted that there is nothing wrong in seeking a personal coach.

The bench also said that the country cannot afford a player doing the rounds in courts ahead of international events.



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