The Delhi high court barred sacked CWG Organising Committee chief Suresh Kalmadi on Wednesday from participating in the London Olympics opening ceremony, saying his presence would be “contrary to national interest” and “an embarrassment to the country”.
He has, however, been allowed to witness the sports events from the next day in his individual capacity. The court has left it to the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), of which he is a member, to decide whether to permit him to take part in its council meetings. Kalmadi is the president of the Asian athletics body.
“Having regard to the fact that Kalmadi was associated with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for quite sometime, his presence in the ensuing Olympic Games, particularly at the opening ceremony, may be viewed by one and all concerned as representing India and would be contrary to the national interest,” said a bench of acting chief justice AK Sikri and Justice RS Endlaw.
The order came on a petition filed by a lawyer Rahul Mehra, who argued that Kalmadi, the main accused in the CWG scam, should be restrained from going to the Olympics as "it would tarnish the country's image".
Kalmadi later said in a statement that he had no plan to attend the opening ceremony and that he had only applied to the court for attending the IAAF council meetings in London.