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“Country’s Prestige Involved”: Orissa High Court orders the centre to make all necessary arrangements for the participation of the women’s U-18 volleyball team at the Asian Games.

In the case of Lasyamayee Mohanta v. Union of India & Ors.( Case No.: W.P.(C) No. 11906 of 2022, Order Dated- 19th May 2022, Coram- Justice Biswanath Rath), the 14th Asian Women’s Volleyball Championship, which is scheduled to take place in June in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, has been ordered by the Orissa High Court to be attended by the Indian Under-18 Women’s Volleyball Team. The Union of India has been ordered to make all necessary arrangements, including financial and travel arrangements. A Single Judge Bench of Justice Biswanath Rath noted, “It is at this level, this Court also examines the prestige of the Country concerned in this, while expressing deep dismay at the inaction of the Union of India in this regard. If a nation with 175 crores of citizens fails to send the contingent that has already been chosen to compete in a renowned tournament like the 14th Asian Women’s U-18 Volleyball Championship, it would not make a favourable impression. This Court concludes that the Union of India is even refusing to support the Court since they are participating in a contest at their level. This Court records the peculiar situation involving O.Ps. 1 and 2 cooperating in such a severe crime despite having already been granted two adjournments.

Facts: Ms. Lasyamayee Mohanta, an Odisha-born volleyball player who was chosen to play for the Indian Under-18 Women’s Volleyball Team in the 14th Asian Women’s U-18 Volleyball Championship, filed the writ petition. There is a serious allegation that the authorities are failing to send the team for participation in the aforementioned competition, which is set to take place between June 6 and June 13, 2022, in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, despite the fact that there is no dispute regarding the players due to some disputes involving the management of the Volleyball Federation of India that are still pending at another level. Despite O.P.’s suggestion, it was asserted in the petition that 3. No decision has been made on the Indian Under-18 Women’s Volleyball Team, and as a result, there is grave bias against the athletes. It also expressed disappointment that the nation might not be allowed to participate in the process.

Judgement: Despite continuing litigation over matters unrelated to this case, the court determined that there is no legal barrier to sending the Indian contingent to compete in the 14th Asian Women’s U-18 Volleyball Championship. Given the aforementioned facts and the absence of any opposition from O.Ps. 1 and 2 as of the hearing date, the Court was forced to give O.Ps. 1 and 2 the order to make all necessary preparations for shifting the contingency. In response, the court issued the following directive: Looking to the Schedule prepared by the President, Thailand Volleyball Association at Nakhon Pathom, the Organiser of the Event and communicated to the President, Volleyball Federation of India appearing at Annexure-5, this Court directs O.Ps. 1 & 2 to make all arrangements for preparation and moving of the contingency prepared under Annexure-4 following the communication on the Schedule and the time frame in different aspect and also make necessary arrangements for the other necessary. O.P. 3 is instructed to maintain the contingency selected list as per Annexure 4 in readiness for their participation in the event in the interim.

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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY SNIGDHA DUBEY

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