Ban looms large as WFI Elections delayed again after Guwahati High Court issues Stay Order

The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) is in turmoil. The sports body is under threat of a ban with the WFI elections…

Ban looms large as WFI Elections delayed again after Guwahati High Court issues Stay Order

The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) is in turmoil. The sports body is under threat of a ban with the WFI elections postponed once again. After repeated delays, the ad-hoc committee were set to hold the elections on July 11. However, now the Guwahati High Court has issued a stay order.

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The decision was taken after a petition filed by the Assam Wrestling Association. In its petition filed against the WFI, IOA ad-hoc body, and the Sports Ministry, the Assam Wrestling Association claimed that despite recommendations made by the then-WFI Executive Committee at the WFI’s General Council in Gonda on November 15, 2014, it had been denied membership despite being entitled to it.

Ban looms large as WFI Elections delayed again after Guwahati High Court issues Stay Order

The ad-hoc panel has fixed June 25 as the last date for receiving the names for the electoral college while the while the elections to elect the new governing body would be held on July 11. The petitioner argued that the election process ought to be put on hold until their organisation joined the WFI and had the ability to choose their representative in the electoral college.

The court directed the respondents — WFI ad-hoc body and the Sports Ministry — that till the next date is fixed for hearing they should not proceed with the elections of the Executive Committee of the WFI. The court fixed July 17 as the next date for hearing.

The elections thus are likely to be delayed unless the WFI ad-hoc committee and the Assam Wrestling Association can solve their conflict. A further delay could possible lead to a ban on the WFI with the International Olympic Committee also tracking the issue.

In their statement on the Wrestlers Protest in late May, IOC threatened to put a ban on WFI.

“Failing to do so may lead UWW to suspend the federation, thereby forcing the athletes to compete under a neutral flag. It is reminded that UWW already took a measure in this situation by reallocating the Asian Championship planned in New Delhi earlier this year,” the UWW wrote.

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