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The Tribune: IHF still calling the shots (4/5/2011)
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IHF still calling the shots

M.S.Unnikrishnan

Despite the International Hockey Federtion's (FIH) stern warning that it would not tolerate any unauthorised body or any tournament organised by such bodies, the rival Indian Hockey Federtion (IHF) seems to be calling the shots still.

Though the national camp for selection of the senior women's hockey team, organised by Hockey India, began on April 1, the Railway Sports Control Board has not given clearance to its playing members to attend the camp on the pretext that they have to play in the (unauthorised) Senior National Championship for Women in Bangalore, starting on April 5.

The present coaching camp for women started after the orders of the Supreme Court and it was surprising that the Railways have not released their players for the camp. A Hockey India source said the IHF had no locus standi, and therefore, no authority to conduct the Senior National Championship for women.

The source said that the IHF got relief from the Delhi High Court on recognition only for the men's body, and the FIH, with effect from March 11, 2011 had implemented its rules viz authorised and unauthorised tournaments.

By virtue of these rules, players of a country participating in any unauthorised tournament within or outside the country can/will be banned from participating in FIH authorised tournaments.

A letter of the Registrar of Societies, Tamilnadu, dated March 31, 2011, confirmed that no merger/amalgamation has taken place in the IHF, hence it is very clear that the IHF is only a men's body which was de-recognised by the FIH in 2001.

In a letter to Railway sports officer Ashok Dewan, Hockey India secretary-general Narinder Batra requested the Railways to "reconsider your decision of participating in the unauthorised tournament in Bangalore", warning that "if our request is not looked into, then any player by virtue of the FIH regulations effective fom 11 March, 2011 is barred/banned from partcipating in FIH events/national team, then the Railways will be solely responsible/liable for the same".

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