New Delhi: Holding that selection for the Olympic Games was not an issue for it to adjudicate, the Delhi high court on Tuesday directed the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) to hold a meeting between wrestler Sushil Kumar, his coach, its president, vice president and secretary to resolve the matter.
Olympic medallist Kumar and fellow wrestler Narsingh Yadav are engaged in a selection battle for a spot in the wrestling squad going to the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The spot is in the 74-kg freestyle wrestling category.
Justice Manmohan, before whom the matter was brought, also issued notice to the Centre, Wrestling Federation of India, Indian Olympic Association and Narsingh Yadav and sought their responses on the issue.
“Both the sportspersons appear to be equally placed and due to lack of any mala fide or pervasiveness in the reasons for each of their selections, the court cannot be dragged into this. It must be resolved by the designated sports authorities," the judge said.
It was pointed out that on the one hand Narsingh Yadav had won a bronze in the World Championship in 2015, which helped secure a place for India in the Olympics; on the other, Sushil Kumar had proved himself at various wrestling events in the past.
The court was hearing a plea brought by Sushil Kumar, seeking conduct of trials for selection to the 74-kg men’s freestyle event at the Rio Olympics. The Olympic Games are scheduled to be held from 5 August.
Sushil Kumar has been omitted from the preparatory camp for the Rio games as only quota place-earning wrestlers have been included.
According to the rules, Narsingh’s name figures in the men’s 74-kg freestyle division for the camp based on his performance at the World Championship last year.
Sushil Kumar, on the other hand, did not participate in the event as he was recovering from an injury.
His lawyer said that a trial would ensure fair selection.
The matter will be heard next on 27 May.