The sports ministry on Tuesday quashed the election of the president, secretary and treasurer of the Athletics Federation of India (AFI), and asked the national sports federation (NSF) to hold fresh polls within 60 days, or before February 28, whichever is earlier.
The ministry has also directed the AFI to amend its constitution, failing which it will withdraw its recognition of the NSF.
A day after it issued a show-cause notice to the AFI, asking it to explain its stand on certain issues related to the April polls, the ministry termed the elections to the three key posts invalid as they were conducted in violation of the Sports Code.
Adille Sumariwala of Maharashtra was the president, CV Valson of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka's Satyanarayan had been elected secretary and treasurer, respectively.
In its communication to the federation, the ministry stated that as per the AFI constitution, "a person must be an existing member of the executive committee of the federation to seek election to the post of president/secretary. The clause restricts potential candidates from becoming an office-bearer for the top post. It is also a violation of the Sports Code".
Sumariwala said the elections were held as per the AFI constitution, but due to a technicality the process of electing the three officials would be carried out again. "We have accepted the government direction and will follow it," he said. He claimed that he could be re-elected. "I am eligible," he said.