It's an uphill task but the new sports minister, Ajay Maken, is set to trudge the difficult path. Armed with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) charter, the minister on Tuesday spoke about reforming the national sports federations' (NSFs) functioning.
Maken said he would implement the IOC charter shortly, adding that he was dismayed with the way sports enthusiasts felt when huge Indian contingents returned with measly hauls of medals from international meets. "To close that gap, a need for good governance is required. That can only be done by following the IOC charter," the minister said.
He said his first step in that direction would be to formulate a national sports policy in a more structured manner. The reformed policy will be known as the national sports development legislation (NSDL), he added. Good governance, said the minister, would be the cornerstone of the NSDL, which is expected to be uploaded on the government website by Feb 20 for discussion. "The NSDL would remain on the portal for a month. Thereafter, the reformed document will be tabled in Parliament within two weeks."
Some of the salient features of the NSDL include transparency in elections, limiting age and tenure of office-bearers and involvement of elite players in the functioning of the NSFs. Reading out the IOC charter, the minister said, "It (IOC charter) makes a mention that at least 20 per cent of office-bearers in the federations shall constitute top players. Measures against sexual harassment and overage fraud shall also be included in the reformed policy."
Maken also talked about constituting a sports law. "Several nations have adopted their own sports laws. We will pick some good points and incorporate them into our law," he said.
To a question whether the BCCI would also be brought under the purview of government guidelines, he said, "The BCCI had been reaping the benefits given to other federations in the past. I hope they want to continue enjoying that status."
He also announced the enactment of the national sports development code of India, 2011, which has details of the government guidelines.