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Women Presence In Sporting World Must Be Acknowledged, Sports Administration Not A Male Preserve :Delhi High Court

Delhi High Court observed that sports administration is not a male preserve and women presence in sporting world must be acknowledged. This was seen in the case of RAHUL MEHRA v. UNION OF INDIA AND ORS (W.P.(C) 195/2010) and the judgement was presided over by the division bench of HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE MANMOHAN and HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE NAJMI WAZIR.

Facts of the case-

The plea sought recognition of defaulting NSFs be suspended or withdrawn, and that the benefits given to such non compliant NSFs be not resumed till the constitution and administration of the IOA or NSF is brought into conformity with the Sports Code.

It further added that the number of sportspersons with voting rights in the General Body should be equal to at least the NSFs representing Olympic sports. Adding to this the plea bought attention to the fact that in all its 95 years of existence, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) never had a woman as its President or Secretary General.

Judgement-                       

The High Court observed that sports administration is not a male preserve and women presence in sporting world must be acknowledged moreover women do aspire to be in significant positions in the decision making process and that their presence both in the General Body, as well as the Election Commission of the IOA, will lend to “fruition of their valid aspirations.”

The High Court said- “Special representation of women in Governing Bodies is a requirement under Clause 2.4 of the IOC‟s Code of Ethics. Women comprise about 50% of the country’s population. Their numbers in sporting activities is increasing by the day. Their representation in the Indian contingent at the Olympics and other international sporting events is in equal measure with men.”

It also added that “Their participation in such events and the celebrations of their victories is as much a matter of pride and joy, as the victories of their male counterparts. There is every reason to acknowledge women‟s significant presence in the sporting world. Sports administration is not a male preserve.”

Accordingly, the Court directed that women shall comprise half of the category of sportspersons with voting rights in the General Body as well as in the Election Commission of IOA.

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Judgement Reviewed by Utkarsh Sahu

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