The turf war between Hockey India (HI) and Indian Hockey Federation (IHF) has harmed the prospects of the sport in the country no end. But, it has done one good thing.
Because of its dispute with the IHF, the sport's international governing body, FIH, has been forced to amend its rules regarding membership, jurisdiction, tournaments and judicial commission. The new statute will come up for approval on Saturday, the second day of the three-day FIH Congress that started in Kuala Lumpur on Friday.
The FIH has 'acknowledged' IHF's role in forcing it to amend its rules. “During the dispute with the IHF, it has become clear that we need to make some amendments to the statute in relation to the objects and jurisdiction clauses (to emphasise the importance of the pyramid system of governance and regulation)," said a commentary on the proposed changes provided to the members of the Congress.
As per the note, the FIH has brought in changes in rules for membership, emphasising the importance of 'one country, one member'. It has also revised the rights and obligations of members and set criteria for membership, making it clear that the national association must claim exclusive power to govern both the men's and women's hockey and that the claim must be recognised by the National Olympic Committee. (The emphasis on NOC negates government recognition and thus the possibility of intervention by local courts).