At a time when the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) should be busy overseeing preparations for next year's London Olympics, its members, it seems, are at loggerheads over the formation of the ethics committee and arbitration commission.
The ethics and arbitration panels, formed earlier this year, by the IOA were disbanded after the annual general body meeting on December 15. A senior official's claim that such a committee could not be formed without the consent of the general body was dismissed by IOA's secretary-general Randhir Singh.
Tarlochan Singh, IOA vice-president, reportedly said that he was also in favour of the committees, but felt the panels were disbanded because they were formed without the ratification or support of the general body. The panels were formed by Randhir Singh and IOA president VK Malhotra.
When asked by HT about Tarlochan's reported statement, Randhir rubbished it saying, "I am not aware of any such development. In any case, who is he to make such a statement?"
"The president, under the IOA's constitution, has the power to form any committee or commission.
"Some officials are not versed with the rules. Lack of understanding of rules on the part of the members was responsible for the scrapping of the panels," he said, adding it could have serious repercussions.
However, IOA acting president VK Malhotra kept his cards close to him saying he wouldn't comment on the reports that there is internal rift, but said: "Unity is required to move forward".
Malhotra said some members of the IOA had reservations on the setting up of the panels earlier this year, saying voting powers of the officials should have been cross-checked. The panels will be set up within a week.
It seems even in the selection of the chef-de-mission for the Olympics, no consensus has been reached. If insiders are to be believed, two names are doing the round. Tarlochan is one of them but not many favour him.