Khelo India Youth Games: Delhi HC to hear Delhi Gymnastics Association plea on January 27
The Delhi High Court has directed the Gymnastics Federation of India (GFI) and the Delhi Olympic Association (DOA) to file their replies on a petition of the Delhi Gymnastics Association (DGA) seeking the inclusion of gymnasts recommended by it for the Khelo India Youth Games to be held in Madhya Pradesh from January 31 to February 11.
On January 16, Justice Pratibha M. Singh directed the respondents to file their replies before the next date of hearing on January 27. The Court set the date for further arguments on the application of the DGA and for passing appropriate directions since the Youth Games are due to begin from January 31.
The DGA had filed the application because in the recently held Junior National Artistic Gymnastics Championship in Kerala from 30.12.2022 to 02.01.2023, its team, categorised as Delhi B as per a Delhi High Court vacation bench order, did well. The Delhi B men’s team was ranked fourth among 20 participating teams in Men’s Artistic Gymnastics (MAG) and its women’s team stood third out of 17 teams in Women’s Artistic Gymnastics (WAG) from across India.
DGA advocate Upender Thakur argued that the Junior National Artistic Gymnastics Championship was a qualifying competition for the 5th edition of Khelo India Youth Games. The Games allocate a state an additional quota of gymnasts it can send on the basis of its ranking in the Junior Nationals.
Thakur said Delhi state became entitled to nominate 1 extra male gymnast and 2 additional women gymnasts for the Youth Games only because of the DGA gymnasts’ performance. Despite this, the GFI nominated some others (one gymnast for MAG and two gymnasts for WAG) for the Youth Games even though the DGA had shared its recommendations of deserving gymnasts for the quota entitlement.
Earlier on December 28, the single-judge Vacation Bench of Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva had issued notice to GFI, DOA and the Ministry on the DGA petition challenging the December 12, 2022 notification expelling the DGA from GFI. The HC had also allowed the participation of the DGA team in the Junior Nationals Artistic Gymnastics Championship in Kerala as Delhi B.