Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has decided to restore the recognition of the Gymnastics Federation of India (GFI) as a National Sports Federation (NSF).
In a letter to the GFI president, the Sports Ministry mentioned that the elections of two office bearers -- Sudhir Mittal (President) and Kaushik Bidiwala (Treasurer) -- for the term 2019- 2023 have been taken on record of the Ministry. The letter also mentioned that the decision on the acceptance of the election of S Shanti Kumar Singh as general secretary will be taken after Manipur High Court's judgment in the writ petition filed by S Shanti Kumar Singh.
Further, the election of Parmeshwar Prajapat as executive Member will be accepted by the Department subject to verification of NOC and other facts from his employer.
"Upon consideration of the entire matter, it has also been decided to restore the recognition of GFI with immediate effect, upto 31.12.2021," the letter read in order to promote and development of sports of gymnastics in the country.
"It has been noticed that constitution, MoA of the GFI needs to be aligned with the provisions of the National Sports Development Code of India, 2011 (Sports Code) Accordingly, the Federation is required to make categorical affirmation of the provisions of the Sports Code in its constitution withal 6 months so as to bring the same fully in line with the Sports Code," it added.
The Sports Ministry said the office bearers of the federation shall invariably be appointed by election as per the Model Election Guidelines issued by the Ministry.
The GFI shall also give at least two months advance notice to the Government for any change in its constitution and a copy of the proposed changes should be sent along with the notice.
The Sports Ministry also warned that the recognition may be withdrawn if any of the terms and conditions of the recognitions are violated or its own constitution is violated.
Shanti Kumar was elected as general secretary in the polls held on November 5, 2019 but the ministry had objected to his election on the ground of tenure rule violation of the Sports Code of 2011.
The ministry had said that Shanti Kumar had earlier served a term each as treasurer and general secretary and so his re-election as general secretary for a second term was in violation of the Sports Code.
Shanti Kumar said the Manipur High Court has stayed the order of the sports ministry and the case is again coming up on March 3.
"First, the single bench stayed the ministry order and then they (ministry) went to the double bench which said it will not interfere with the earlier order. I am hoping for a favourable ruling on March 3," he said from Imphal.
His contention was that since the GFI has not been recognised by the ministry since 2011, the Sports Code does not apply to his case.
He said a similar question arose before his nomination during the 2019 GFI elections and the returning officer had ruled in his favour on the basis of the same grounds he had argued in front of the High Court.