NRAI to probe fistfight between shooters

NEW DELHI:In a serious breach of discipline, a former international shooter and a renowned shot had to be physically restrained at the Karni Singh Shooting Range (KSSR) after getting involved in fisticuffs.

Vinayak Padmadeo

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 20

In a serious breach of discipline, a former international shooter and a renowned shot had to be physically restrained at the Karni Singh Shooting Range (KSSR) after getting involved in fisticuffs.

Shooters and coaches had to intervene as Yoginder Pal Singh, a former member of the Indian double trap team, and Babar Khan went knuckle to knuckle today over an argument regarding the scheduling of rounds. A 40-second video of the fight is being circulated amongst the shooters as well. Both the shooters were told to leave the range after the fracas. They have lodged complaints against each other for the fracas. Most of the six ranges at KSSR are being used for the senior and junior national camps for the Asian Shooting Championships. Range No. 6, where the fight happened, was the only one spared for the shooters registered for training under the Come & Play scheme.

The National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) has taken cognizance of the incident. “We will hold an inquiry and suitable action will be taken,” NRAI secretary general DV Seetharama Rao  told The Tribune.

Babar, who has sent his complaint to KSSR administrator Satyajit Sankrit, said he insisted on shooting the round — his second today — because he could only shoot one yesterday as it was pointless for him to come all the way from Ghaziabad for one round. “I was to shoot in the next round as well but he (Yoginder) stopped me. I asked him in what capacity was he telling me not to shoot,” Babar said.

“I was told that I will have to wait till 4pm so I refused. He then raised his voice and our argument began. After an exchange of words I withdrew myself. Then all of a sudden he threw his earmuffs on the ground, abused my mother and rushed towards me. The fight ensued. He hit me and I hit him too,” Babar added.

Babar said he wasn’t proud of his conduct. “I got caught up. What sort of example I was setting for my son? This feels like an insult to me as the video is being circulated all over,” he said.

Yoginder, who has e-mailed his version to Sandip Pradhan, director general Sports Authority of India, has a similar explanation of the incident. “…One thing led to another and both of us raised our voices, and he threatened me to which I replied ‘don’t dry fire at me’. We were both calmed down by the shooters present,” Yoginder wrote in his mail.

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