The sports federation that has given the country maximum number of Olympic medals is not recognised by the sports ministry.
If the shock of the hockey team's disappointing show at the Azlan Shah Cup at Ipoh was not enough, Hockey India (HI) will have to contend with the ministry's decision to derecognise it for this year.
The ministry has, from this year onwards, decided to start giving recognition to federations on an annual basis, and among the leading sports bodies that have missed out this time are wrestling, badminton, squash and Association of Indian Universities (AIU). While the ministry has de-recognised HI for flouting guidelines relating to age and tenure of officials, the wrestling federation finds itself being left out because of its recently-held elections that's been challenged in court.
"Only 22 federations have fulfilled the ministry's guidelines and they have been granted recognition for this year. We expect that, in the coming months, other federations too will fulfil the norms and get on board," said Sports Authority of India (SAI) secretary, Gopal Krishna.
On the backfoot
The federations left out by the ministry will not get direct financial assistance and will have no say in the making the Long Term Development Plan. The selection of coaches will also be the ministry's prerogative.
"We don't want players to suffer so we are not stopping financial assistance to the disciplines whose federations are not recognised. The ministry will directly look after the financial matters relating to coaching and participation of the teams in international events," said a ministry official. "We did'nt even call federations not recognised by us for the steering committee meeting."