Court Investigates AKFI Selection Process

The Delhi High Court is taking allegations against the Amateur Kabaddi Federation of India (AKFI) seriously. Questions regarding wrongdoing in the selection process for the Asian Games teams are under investigation. The allegations include possible bribery.

Chief Justice Rajendra Menon, and Justice VK Rao instructed the AKFI to conduct a selection process on 15th September 2018. In the process, the retired Delhi High Court Justice SP Garg will observe. He will observe the selection along with a Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports officer.

After 28 years as winners, the Indian men’s Kabaddi team only took bronze at the Asian Games. The women’s team won gold in both 2010 and 2014, but lost the final this year.

The Selection Process

Once the Asian Games selection took place, Mahipal Singh, a former Indian international Kabaddi sportsman, reported the bribery suspicions. BS Nagar, the advocate who petitioned the court on Mahipal’s behalf, explained the court’s decision.

Nagar noted: “The game will be between the men and women players who represented India at the Asian Games, and those who were not picked. They will be from those who attended the national camp. It doesn’t say that the people who were part of the Asian Games team have to compulsorily participate.”

While participation is not compulsory, it appears that a number of players plan to make their excuses. Some Asian Games players claimed injuries, hoping to delay the match date. Nagar said that the teams fear defeat, while they were unwitting victims in the selection process. Hopefully the players’ good conscience will prevail.

The High Court Ruling

The High Court’s ruling noted: “The entire selection process shall be videographed, and the recording thereof shall be preserved by the Sports Association of India, and a copy thereof be placed before this court as well.”

Three selectors, chosen by the Secretary of the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, will oversee the process.