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IOA's new President Ramachandran cases pending in HC, still 'clean'?
With N. Ramachandran elected as the new President of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA), there is hope that the Indian athletes would be soon representing India under the national flag, not the Olympic flag. But, still everything does not look rosy, as there are criminal cases pending in the High Court against Ramachandran. This could once again land IOA in another soup.

The International Olympic committee suspended IOA due to ethical and administrative reasons in the association along with its failure to comply with the Olympic charter. They asked IOA to conduct fair elections and elect a person with a clean image with no history of corruption or criminal cases. But, what now, with Ramachandran's case pending in the high court. Will the IOC turn a blind eye?

Ramachandran is allegedly involved in misleading, forgery and manipulation cases. In total there are five criminal cases involving IOA's president, out of which three are pending with the High Court, and the other two not filed in High Court as of now.

By disobeying IOC's code of ethics, how can one expect a clean and fair Indian Olympic Association, where the President is not clean. With this, can one expect that the association will work for the improvement of the quality of games, provide conducive environment for the player to grow and groom themselves and present a neat and clean image of Indian Olympics?

There has been a difference of opinion amongst many a experts about the new President, mostly negative. Still, some expect that it may bring a new era in Indian sports as well, while some feel, it is not going to bring any difference in the current Olympic Association.

KPS Gill, former president of Indian Hockey Federation said, “they have their own politics, but I don' think that this will bring any drastic change in Indian Olympics. People who come into power are not connected in any Olympic sports and they don't even have the knowledge of sports ; how can one expect them to make a positive difference? There are cases pending against him (Ramachandran) in the high court. I think the whole system of association needs to be changed, and young blood should come and replace them, who have knowledge and idea of Olympic sports. These people do not have any sports as well as administrative knowledge.”

However there are some who are hopeful that this will bring in a change. Sunita Godara, Coordinator, Clean Sports India said, “I hope that this election will bring a positive change not only to the players but to the association as well.'' With IOC taking a tough stance on India, suspending them, one hopes that India has learned a lesson and would try to adhere to IOC charter.

With Indian officials having a bad record in corruption, Godara also feels that corruption still might take place. She added, ''there is no guarantee that corruption will not take place in the association. They could have conducted this election earlier, if they really wanted Indian athletes to play under the national flag. Majority of the officials should be from Olympic squad who have a better understanding of the sport. Most of the administrators all come into this for power and money, but nobody cares for player.''

N. Ramachandran was unanimously named as the new president of the IOA in the elections held in the presence of three observers from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) — Pere Miró, IOC Director of NOC Relations, Jérôme Poivey, Head of Institutional Relations in the NOC Relations Department, and Robin Mitchell, head of the IOC delegation.

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