Indian archery may be forced under neutral flag

Deepika Kumari

Indian archers run the risk of competing under a neutral World Archery flag if the national federation of the country Archery Association of India fails to govern correctly, World Archery’s secretary general Tom Dielen has warned.

The AAI was de-recognised by the Government of India in December 2012 for violating the Sports Code after numerous irregularities. An administrator has been appointed, but nothing has apparently been done as yet. The chaotic fallout from the federation problems included one of the compound coaches resigning immediately before the World Cup final.

“The current status quo cannot continue indefinitely. At this stage, we’re are still enthusiastic that a resolution can be reached but this must happen soon. It’s our primary objective,” Dielen told Indian news site Scroll. “If it does not happen, then further steps will be taken. But those steps will not be designed to punish athletes. However, it is a constitutional requirement that a well-governed member association is in place within a country.”

India is one of the largest markets for archery and participation is increasing, while at the elite level, the ongoing deadlock is increasingly an issue with the primary Olympic qualification tournaments happening next year.

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