Sports Ministry gives 5 NSFs 1 year, others 6 months to align with Sports Code

The ones who were given one year time period due to their "special nature" are yatching, equestrian, polo, motorsport and Special Olympic Bharat.

Representative image: The Sports Ministry has given six months to all National Sports Federations (NSFs), except for five who were handed relaxation of one year, to amend their constitutions and align them per the National Sports Development Code to be eligible for government's recognition.   -  H. Vibhu

The Sports Ministry has given six months to all National Sports Federations (NSFs), except for five who were handed relaxation of one year, to amend their constitutions and align them per the National Sports Development Code to be eligible for government's recognition.

The ones given one year time due to their "special nature" are yachting, equestrian, polo, motorsport and Special Olympic Bharat.

The decision was taken during a virtual meeting between joint secretary (Sports) L Siddhartha Singh and representatives of NSFs. During the meeting, Singh told the NSFs that compliance with the provisions of the Sports Code is binding on the federations.

"They should not only follow the provisions outlined in the Sports Code in managing their affairs to the extent the Sports Code provisions are applicable, but also take immediate steps for making requisite amendments in their constitutions/bye-laws so that they are in sync with the Sports Code," a Sports Ministry release stated.

"...the Federations have been given time of 6 months except in case of 5 NSFs, who have been given one year due to the special nature of the 5 sports, to align their constitutions/bye-laws with Sports Code."

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The Sports Ministry official also made it clear that NSFs will get no further extension. If any NSF fails to comply with the Sports Code, the concerned federation will be derecognised.

The Sports Code has been mired in controversy with several NSFs and the IOA opposing its age and tenure cap regulations for office-bearers before finally coming around in the last couple of years.

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The NSFs have also been asked to furnish information about the compliance of the Sports Code provisions on fortnightly basis to the Ministry so that the Delhi High Court is also apprised of the same.

The Ministry's power to relax the Sports Code will cover "renewal of recognition of NSFs on annual basis and governance and management of Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and NSFs, as a special exemption where considered necessary."

Interestingly, the Sports Ministry on Monday issued a circular stating that the power to relax provisions of the Sports Code will lie with it while deciding on the grant of recognition to federations and the management of the IOA.