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Sports Ministry papers go missing

May 23, 2005 20:26 IST

The Indian Hockey Federation controversy took a new turn on Monday today with the Centre telling the Delhi high court that the originals of certain Sports Ministry papers, photocopies of which were produced by IHF senior vice-president Narinder Batra, were not traceable.

During hearing on Batra's plea, seeking initiation of contempt proceedings against the Sports Secretary for allegedly misleading the court by concealing certain relevant pages of a government file, Additional Solicitor General P P Malhotra said the same were not traceable as there was no file number on the papers submitted by the petitioner.

He also urged the court to direct Batra to file an affidavit disclosing how did he got the papers.

Justice Gita Mittal asked the Centre to file an affidavit explaining its position on the "missing" papers and fixed Thursday for further hearing.

Batra, who has challenged IHF president K P S Gill and secretary-general K Jothikumaran's continuation in office, has accused the Centre of concealing the then Sports Minister Uma

Bharati's order on limiting the tenure of office-bearers of sports bodies.

Batra's counsel Maninder Singh alleged that while mentioning Bharti's October 11, 2001 noting on the file, the Centre deliberately concealed her November 2001 order that made it clear that the guidelines were not to be kept in abeyance.

Batra has sought quashing of the election of Gill and Jothikumaran on grounds that their continuation in office was not in conformity with Sports Ministry guidelines limiting the tenure of the office-bearers of sports bodies to two consecutive terms of four years each.

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