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Posted at: Dec 8, 2017, 2:07 AM; last updated: Dec 8, 2017, 2:07 AM (IST)

Batra set to be IOA boss after Khanna withdraws from race

Batra set to be IOA boss after Khanna withdraws from race
International Hockey Federation president Narinder Batra. file

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 7

Narinder Batra is all set to become the next Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president after Anil Khanna decided not to contest the election.

Batra, Khanna and Weightlifting Federation of India (WFI) president BP Baishya had filed their nomination papers to contest for the IOA’s top post. Baishya had withdrawn his candidacy before December 3, which was the last day for the withdrawal of papers. 

Khanna, who formerly headed the All-India Tennis Association (AITA), today announced his intention not to contest in a letter to IOA members. But the voting process will still be held on December 14, when the IOA Annual General body Meeting (AGM) is scheduled to be held.

“In order to keep the IOA family united and to ensure that common friends are not put in a difficult situation while deciding who to vote for, I have decided to withdraw my candidature as president of IOA from the current election in favour of Dr Narinder Dhruv Batra,” Khanna wrote.

“IOA has been one family so far, and the election this year is creating division,” he continued. “I have had an opportunity of discussing with many of you over the last eight days and also with some of our more experienced members who have led the IOA so far. Many do not want a division as they enjoy a warm relationship with both sides and find themselves in a difficult situation to finally decide whom to vote for.”

Contest on for VP, treasurer posts?

Jharkhand Olympic Association chief RK Anand and International Kabaddi Federation (IKF) president Janardhan Singh Gehlot are in a direct contest for the post of the senior vice president. Interestingly, a few from the Jharkhand body have approached the Ranchi High Court against the candidacy of Anand, pleading that his candidature be stopped because he was flouting domicile rules and was also over the stipulated age of 70 years, as per the Sports Code.

The situation is similar for the post of the treasurer. Judo Federation of India’s Mukesh Kumar, Uttar Pradesh Olympic Association’s Anandeshwar Pandey and Rio Olympics Chef-de-Mission Rakesh Gupta have filed their papers. Kumar’s candidature has the backing of the major powerbrokers, including Lalit Bhanot. But he is facing opposition on the account that his tenure has finished and fresh elections weren’t held. If Kumar’s candidature is struck off by the returning officer, then Gupta will be the favourite to become the treasurer.

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