Pune: Taekwondo players approach court seeking representation at Asian Games

Jul 30, 2018, 15:06 IST | Chaitraly Deshmukh

Jain said that since there was no representation from India for Taekwondo (Kyurogi) in all categories and since the two women are the top-ranked players in their respective category, they should be sent to represent the country at the Asian Games

Pune: Taekwondo players approach court seeking representation at Asian Games
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Two women Taekwondo players including a Pune based law student have approached the Delhi High Court seeking direction to the Union Ministry of Sports and other authorities to include their names in the list of players who would represent India in the upcoming 18th Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia. The two players, Purva Dattatray Dixit (24) and Kashish Malik (18) had moved a petition by their lawyer Saurabh Jain in the High court of New Delhi seeking direction to the Sports Authority of India and Sports Ministry to conduct selection trials in order to select Taekwondo players and to allow the selected players to participate and represent the country at the Asian Games to be held from August 18 to September 2 at Jakarta, Indonesia.

Justice Vibhu Bakhru on Thursday has ordered and directed the counsel for Centre to take instructions from Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore to act as a single person committee to decide on the issue as to how India can be properly represented at the Asian Games, 2018 for Taekwondo Sport since the Indian Olympic Association has not cleared the names of eligible players to represent the country at such a major event. The matter has been adjourned till July 30.

Justice Bakhru observed, "It is apparent from the averments made in the present petitions that the selection of the sportspersons has not been conducted in the manner that should have been in as much as the concerned National Sports Federation (NSF) has been suspended and Indian Olympic Association (IOA)....the parties have agreed that the decision by the Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs Secretary with regards to the selection process shall be considered as final and would not be contested."

According to the petition, Kashish is a Kyorugi Taekwondo player for under 49 kg in senior category female and has participated in various national and international events since 2010 and has secured several medals, including four gold medals at international events. While 18-year-old Purva is a Kyorugi Taekwondo player for under 57 kg in senior category female. She is a resident of Pune and perusing her final year law. She has participated in various national and international events since 2015 and bagged several medals, including two gold and a silver at the international level, it said.

Jain said that since there was no representation from India for Taekwondo (Kyurogi) in all categories and since the two women are the top-ranked players in their respective category, they should be sent to represent the country at the Asian Games.

Jain said, "Admittedly selection trials were not conducted by anyone, neither the Taekwondo Federation of India nor by the Indian Olympic Association or Sports Authority of India. The petitioners (players) are aggrieved by the arbitrary action on the part of the respondents (authorities) resulting in a shameful situation where in-spite of having qualified to participate in Taekwondo sport in the 18th Asian Games... being organised by Olympic Council of Asia, they and the other competent and deserving players of Taekwondo sport have not been selected for participating in the Asian Games."

It alleged that the action was completely "arbitrary and malafide", resulting in the chances to score medals for India at such a big international event to be "virtually minuscule".

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