Archery Association of India suspended by governing body

The decision is effective from Monday and the last event in which the archers can participate under the Indian flag is the World Archery Youth Championships in Madrid from August 19-25.

Indian Archery President B.V.P. Rao interacts with the media at the 39th National Archery Championship. (File Photo)   -  BISWARANJAN ROUT

Indian archers’ participation in international events under the National flag seems to be jeopardised with World Archery (WA) suspending the faction-ridden Archery Association of India (AAI).

In an earlier decision, the WA executive board had given a deadline of July 31 to both AAI factions to resolve their disputes, including parallel elections. The matter is now in court.

“WA is implementing the decision taken in June by suspending the AAI. The last event in which Indian athletes can participate is the (world) youth championships in Madrid (from August 19 to 25),” said WA secretary general Tom Dielen in a statement on Thursday.

The WA decision was taken on Monday.

“We will now work with the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and Indian Government to try to establish a transitory committee, with representatives from all sides, to handle urgent matters.

“If no long-term solution is found by the end of August, the executive board will decide what can be done to preserve the chances of Indian athletes participating in the Asian championships and Asian para championships. At the same time, WA will also decide whether individual athletes can participate in the Indoor Archery World Series,” Dielen added.

The Asian championships and Asian para championships are important as they will award quota places for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.

India has secured three men’s places for the Olympics but is yet to win a women’s spot.

The Arjun Munda-led faction of the AAI said the decision was “unfortunate” and requested the WA not to take “any rash decision until the court passes its judgement.”

The BVP Rao-led faction said, “It’s a black day for Indian archery” and expected a speedy dispersal of the case and revocation of suspension.