Chandigarh, February 17 – After months of flip flop the Indian Olympic Association(IOA) accepted the Panchkula Court order dated 24.12.2008 holding Haryana Olympic Association(HOA) headed by Sh.P.V.Rathee,IPS to be the only legal HOA entitled to represent State of Haryana in the National Games. On 12.2.2011, the IOA finally decided that the HOA headed by Sh. P.V.Rathee,IPS is entitled to field teams of different games in the 34th National Games being held in Jharkhand. After the said decision of the IOA all qualifying teams from Haryana are participating in the National Games under the banner of HOA headed by Sh. P.V.Rathee,IPS.
The controversy regarding functioning/legitimacy of the Governing Body of the HOA started when on 23.6.2004, Sh.Abhey Singh Chautala got the Constitution of the Haryana Olympic Association (HOA) amended so as to make himself life-time President. Subsequently, in a Special General Body Meeting of the Haryana Olympic Association held on 6.5.2006 the said undemocratic amendment made in the Constitution on 23.6.2004 making Sh.Abhey Singh Chautala as life President was resolved to be deleted and a “No Confidence Motion” was passed against him and other office bearers etc. by the same electoral college/affiliated units which had attended the General Body meeting of 23.6.2004.
Despite the election of Sh.Naveen Jindal as the President of the HOA on 6.5.2006, Sh. Abhey Singh Chautala kept asserting him as the President of the HOA. Mr.Chautala even filed a Civil Suit for declaration as Life Time President in a Civil Court at Sirsa. Mr.Chautala also filed a Civil Suit for declaration that the election of Sh.Naveen Jindal as President was bad in law in a Civil Court at Panchkula. When no interim stay was granted in his favour both the said Suits were subsequently withdrawn by him.
In a bid to set at rest all controversies/speculations an Administrator was appointed for the Haryana Olympic Association under Section 30 of the Societies Registration Act in order to get a fresh election held in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution of the HOA vide order Govt. Notification dated 27-9-2007. In law, after the appointment of an Administrator of a Society, the powers of the then existing Governing Body stood vested in the Administrator. However, even after the appointment of the Administrator on 27.9.2007, Mr.Abhey Singh Chautala through illegal/dubious means claimed that he has again been re-elected as the President of the HOA on 2.10.2007. Indeed, a strange claim to have been made by a “so-called life time elected President”. Here it is clarified that after the appointment of an Administrator, no General Body Meeting could have been convened by anyone else other than the Administrator. Hence, the said election was a bogus exercise.
Later, the Administrator appointed Justice G.C.Garg(Retd.) as the Returning Officer to hold elections. Justice G.C.Garg (Retd.) took a decision to hold the election on the basis of the undisputed electoral college which had existed on 23.6.2004 when the last General Body Meeting of HOA had been held headed by Sh.Abhey Singh Chautala. Objections were invited from all concerned before finalization of the electoral college. No objections were filed by anyone including Sh.Abhey Singh Chautala pointing out any deficiency in the proposed electoral college. However, the jurisdiction of the Returning Officer to hold election was challenged on the ground that Mr.Chautala has already been re-elected. It is notable that the legality of the appointment of the Administrator under law or the law itself has not been questioned till date by anyone including Sh.Abhey Singh Chautala.
On 28.8.2008, Sh.Abhey Singh Chautala got filed a Suit for declaration in a Sirsa Court that no election to the Governing Body of the HOA can be held. Stay was granted by the Trial Court and the First Appellate Court against the holding of the proposed election. However, in Revision Petition, the Hon’ble High Court, after hearing both the parties, stayed the restrain order passed by Courts below vide order dated 18.9.2008. On 25.9.2008, the General Body of the HOA unanimously elected Sh.P.V.Rathee as its President. In a Suit filed by the Haryana Olympic Association through Sh.P.V.Rathee, the Court at Panchkula vide its order dated 24.12.2008 restrained Sh.Abhey Singh Chautala and Sh.M.S.Malik from claiming to be the office bearers of the HOA and from participating in the Governing Body elections of the Indian Olympic Association or to use the banner of the HOA in any manner.
In the Governing Body Elections of the Indian Olympic Association held on 10.10.2008 at Pune and now at Ranchi. Mr.Abhey Singh Chautala and Mr.M.S.Malik were not permitted by the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) to participate as office bearers of the Haryana Olympic Association in compliance of the aforesaid Court order.
Mr.Chautala and Mr. Malik filed an appeal against the order of trial court dated 14.12.2008 before the District and Sessions Judge, Panchkula. However, the appeal of Mr. Chautala was dismissed by the Appellate Court vide order dated 22.01.2009. Still dissatisfied with the decisions of the Trial Court and the Appellate Court, a Revision Petition No.1144/2009 was filed before the Hon’ble Punjab and Haryana High Court at Chandigarh challenging the orders dated 24.12.2008 and the order dated 22.01.2009. The Hon’ble High Court after hearing Mr. Chautala dismissed the Revision Petition vide order dated 26.08.2009. In pursuance of the direction of the Trial Court, the Secretary General, Indian Olympic Association (IOA) wrote a letter dated 30.01.2009 to the Organizing Secretary of 34th National Games Organizing Committee regarding participation of players from Haryana in compliance of the Trial Court order. Even the President of IOA Shri Suresh Kalmadi recognized Mr.P.V.Rathee as President of the HOA while addressing letter to him at the time of the Queen’s Baton Relay in Haryana immediately before the New Delhi Commonwealth Games. It might be recalled that the Queen’s Baton was received and handed over by the undersigned as the President of the HOA on the request of Sh.Suresh Kalmadi,M.P., President, IOA.
The schedule of 34th National Games was again issued in the month of Dec. 2010 to the effect that the said National Games shall take place from 12 Feb to 26 Feb 2011. Despite himself having lost the legal battle upto Hon’ble High Court Mr. Chautala surreptitiously got filed a civil suit at a Hansi Civil Court, District Hissar only against the IOA through the so called Haryana Weight Lifting Association seeking direction that only those teams having affiliation with HOA headed by him should be allowed to represent Haryana in the National Games. The said Civil Court at Hansi had no territorial jurisdiction vis-a-vis the IOA. While filing the above said suit at Hansi, the factum that Mr. Chuatala, in whose favour the relief was sought, had himself lost the battle upto Hon’ble High Court, was concealed to mislead the Court to pass an interim order in his favour. Being oblivious of complete facts the said Civil Court at Hansi passed an interim order dated 2.2.2011 directing that teams/players sponsored by Mr.Chautala be allowed to participate in the Ranchi National Games. However, the order dated 2.2.2011 was recalled post haste by the same Hansi Court vide order dated 8.2.2011 when complete facts were placed before by the HOA headed by Mr. P.V.Rathee,IPS. While recalling/revoking its earlier order, the Court at Hansi observed that complete facts were not placed before it when the earlier order dated 2.2.2011 was passed.
It is noteworthy that the very fact that only the teams sponsored by the HOA headed by Sh.P.V.Rathee have been permitted to participate in the ongoing National Games is a clear indicator of the factum of acceptance/recognition by the IOA. Were it not so, Mr.Chautala would have been allowed to sponsor teams for the National Games. What bigger proof is required to establish as to which is the real/legally constituted HOA. Any Doubts?