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HC refuses to interfere with non-selection of Arjuna Awardee para shuttler for Tokyo games

The Delhi High Court refused to interfere with the non-selection of Arjuna Awardee para shuttler Raj Kumar for the mixed doubles badminton event in the upcoming Tokyo Paralympics.

PTI PTI
New Delhi Published on: August 10, 2021 17:30 IST
Raj kumar, para badminton
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Para-badminton player Raj Kumar was accorded with Arjuna Award in 2016. 

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday refused to interfere with the non-selection of Arjuna Awardee para shuttler Raj Kumar for the mixed doubles badminton event in the upcoming Tokyo Paralympics.

“I don't want to dishearten him but I can't help him. You are participating in singles (event). Don't get into this unnecessarily,” observed Justice Rekha Palli. “You are an Arjuna Awardee. The nation will appreciate what you do,” said the judge.

Realising that the court was not inclined to entertain the petition, Kumar, who was represented by advocate Sunny Singla, withdrew the petition.

Senior advocate Nalin Kohli, appearing for the Badminton Association of India, submitted that neither his client nor the Paralympics Committee of India had a role to play in the selection process as the selection of a player depended on his/her performance in the qualifying events.

Since Kumar did not qualify for entry on the basis of these events, his name was sent as a bipartite entry which was rejected by the international authorities, Kohli said.

“90 players have to come. 90 is the sealing. In case it is not filled, if slot is there.. bipartite system kicks in.. Bipartite system is a discretionary process. PCI, BAI have no role to play,” he explained.

In his petition, Kumar sought a direction to the authorities to include his name in the list of selected candidates.

He contended that grave injustice was caused to him on account of the Paralympic Committee of India's selection panel selecting the pair ranked 31 -- Pramod Bhagat and Palak Kohli -- for the mixed doubles badminton event. The petition alleged that the selection committee arbitrarily ignored the pair ranked 6, Raj Kumar and Parul Dalsukhbhai Parmar, for Tokyo Paralympics.

“The Selection Committee of the PCI and respondent no. 4 (Badminton Association) in the arbitrary, capricious and discriminatory exercise of discretion failed to select/ sent the entry of the Petitioner in Tokyo Paralympic 2020 games in badminton competition mixed doubles SL 3-SU 5 event,” the petition said.

Kumar thus submitted that the selection process was not fair and transparent in view of the National Sports Development Code of India, 2011 which mandates judicious selection of players to represent India on merits for major International events.

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