The Indian Hockey Federation (IHF) on Sunday expressed its willingness to merge with Hockey India (HI) "if the need arose in the days to come".The IHF held its special general meeting here and its president, KPS Gill, said he was open to the idea of a truce, to facilitate a revival of the national sport.
Convened to decide a roadmap for the body following the Delhi High Court verdict against the manner in which the IHF was suspended in 2008, Gill even expressed his willingness to comply with the Sports Ministry's guidelines, if implemented, regarding the tenure of sports administrators.
"The interest of hockey is at the forefront and no compromise should be made on its account. We are even willing to comply with the recent directive of the Sports Ministry and I will not contest elections, if it takes place," said the 75-year-old ex cop.
The Ministry had ordered that the tenure of presidents of Indian Olympic Association and National Sports Federation should not be more than 12 years.
Representatives from 30 state units including Olympians Joaquim Carvalho and Gurbax Singh Grewal (Mumbai Hockey Association), RK Shetty and K Krishnamurthy of Karnataka State Hockey Association and Ashok Mathur and Charanjit Singh (Delhi) attended the meeting.
Shanker Lal, under secretary in the Ministry, was present at the meeting as the government observer. On his part, Lal said the government's sole concern in the matter was to facilitate the resolution of conflicting situation.
"The government is seized with the directive of the High Court to ensure that there is a single national governing body for both men and women," he said. A merger between IHF and the Indian Women's Hockey Federation was also expected. However, no decision was made on the same. Gill clarified that he would talk to the IWHF for merger in the near future.