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Home > India > Sports > Hockey > PTI > Report

Gill hits back at Sports Minister

April 25, 2008 19:15 IST

Under-fire hockey supremo K P S Gill hit back at Sports Minister M S Gill for suggesting that younger administrators should head sports federations, saying first the sports minister should be a younger person.

In a scathing counter-attack, a defiant Gill said there is no question of him stepping down as president of the Indian Hockey Federation in the wake of the bribe scandal.

"Let younger people first become sports ministers before such suggestions are given. I don't think age has anything to do with managing sports," KPS Gill said.

"Let not sports ministers talk of accountability or responsibility. Most of them don't know anything about sport and have never done anything for hockey. In the past five years, have you seen these ministers doing anything?" he told CNN-IBN.

"What have these government bodies done for us? When have they ever provided us with the funds or the facilities? They call it the national game and do nothing for it," an angry Gill said.

The IHF chief, under pressure to resign from Members of Parliament, the sports minister and former India players, said other than Uma Bharti none of the sports ministers did anything for the game.

"The present minister has only been there for a few days; let's see what he does. At least she (Uma Bharti) helped build an astro turf ground in Bhopal; the others had no interest in sports and just occupied the chair. Mr (Mani Shankar) Aiyar wasn't even available to meet. So what is one to expect?" Gill said.

On another suggestion from the sports minister that he should "introspect and review" his position in the IHF in the aftermath of the bribe scandal involving K Jothikumaran, Gill questioned the credibility of the sting operation.

"Am I to resign based on a concocted sting operation, or simply because some players or a section of the media wants me to? There is a rule of law, a democracy in the country; I am not going to resign when I haven't done anything wrong," he said.

On former Olympian Aslam Sher Khan starting a signature campaign among Members of Parliament demanding his ouster after the Indian team failed to qualify for Olympics [Images] for the first time in 80 years, he said, "Has media tried to find out how many MPs actually signed this petition? These are all moves by frustrated people?"

On the Indian Olympic Association's emergency meeting on Monday, he said, "Let them meet. I have made it clear, I am not resigning."

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