The Olympic Council of Asia has thrown its weight behind IOA's disgruntled acting-President V K Malhotra and Secretary General Randhir Singh and has urged the IOC against meeting officials from the suspended IOA during Wednesday’s crucial joint meet to end India's Olympic suspension.
The IOC will meet delegations of the IOA and the Indian Sports Ministry in Lausanne to chart a way forward for India's return to the Olympic fold.
Malhotra and Randhir pulled out of the meeting a day after the IOC agreed to include Hockey India General Secretary Narinder Batra and Jharkhand Olympic Association R K Anand in the IOA delegation for the meeting, in addition to the four-member list submitted earlier.
The OCA has now come out in support of the duo.
"As you are aware the IOA and IOC members in India have withdrawn from participating in this meeting for reasons mentioned in their respective letters. As guardians of Olympic Charter, it is therefore our duty to protect the interest of its member NOC," OCA President Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah said in a letter to IOC chief Jacques Rogge.
"I would therefore suggest that on May 15, 2013, the meeting takes place only between the IOC and the government of India delegation headed the Minister, wherein they should be clearly informed that adherence to the Olympic Charter is of paramount importance and any government guideline and amendment to the IOA constitution should be in lien with the Olympic Charter," he added.
The OCA suggested another meeting next month which would also include its representatives to end the deadlock.
"Furthermore, a meeting should be called in mid of June in Lausanne between the IOA, the government of India and the IOC/OCA where further roadmap should be laid down for lifting the suspension of the IOA," the letter stated.
The meeting will also be attended by Sports Minister Jitendra Singh, Sports Secretary P K Deb, Beijing Olympics gold-medallist shooter Abhinav Bindra and Olympian sailor Malav Shroff.
The joint meeting will be from 9 am to 12 noon (local time). It will be followed by the Sports Ministry delegation making a courtesy call to IOC President Jacques Rogge between 12 to 12:45 pm followed by the IOA delegation, which would get just 15 minutes starting 12:45 with the IOC chief.