Sports Ministry relieved after SC judgement

The government also argued that the issue of granting recognition fell solely in the executive’s domain and the High Court shouldn’t have entered into it.

By   |  Published: 17th Sep 2020  8:17 pm

New Delhi: Relieved that it can now grant recognition to national sports federations without seeking the Delhi High court’s consent, the sports ministry is gearing up to initiate the process and will intimate the Apex court in about a week’s time.

The Supreme Court on Thursday said the ministry and the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) are not required to seek the nod of the Delhi High Court before granting recognition to sports federations in the country.

The Apex court was hearing the sports ministry’s appeal against the High Court order which prohibited the authorities from taking a decision on granting recognition to NSFs without its prior nod.

The High Court order was passed on a 2010 PIL, filed by lawyer Rahul Mehra, seeking observance of the National Sports Code and directions to the Sports Ministry and the IOA to ensure the NSFs perform their duties well.

“As per the Honourable Supreme Court’s order today, the Sports Ministry can now give recognitions to NSFs which will help in the preparations for our Olympic-bound athletes,” a Sports Ministry source said.

“But as per the guidelines, we will have to intimate the Hon’ble courts before taking any action on this matter. We are working on the matter and by next week we will be in a position to intimate.”

The bench comprising Justices D Y Chandrachud, Indu Malhotra and K M Joseph said through video conference that aggrieved NSFs on non-grant of recognition can move the court.

The government also argued that the issue of granting recognition fell solely in the executive’s domain and the High Court shouldn’t have entered into it.

Earlier, the Sports Ministry and the IOA had said they have decided to approach the Supreme Court to challenge the Delhi High Court order which prohibited the ministry from taking any decision on grant of recognition to NSFs.

On August 7, the ministry had requested the High Court to modify the order but the court rejected that plea and asked for a National Sports Code compliance report.

The ministry had then sent across a questionnaire to the NSFs seeking the age and tenure details of their office-bearers.