Manika Batra vs TTFI | Delhi High Court stays federation’s ‘compulsory national camp attendance’ rule


In a major relief to ace table tennis player Manika Batra, the Delhi High Court stayed TTFI’s mandate on compulsory attendance to the national camp, in order to be eligible for selection in a tournament. The court also directed the Centre to conduct an inquiry into the complaint filed by Batra.

Some relief came paddler Manika Batra‘s way on Thursday after the Delhi High Court stayed the TTFI’s mandate on compulsory attendance at the national coaching camp, to be selected for any upcoming event. It also directed the Centre to conduct an inquiry into Manika Batra’s complaint. 

Justice Rekha Palli was hearing a plea by Batra, who was left out of the Asian Table Tennis Championship after the highest-ranked women’s singles player failed to report for the national camp, after she alleged that coach Soumyadeep Roy had pressurized to concede her match during the Olympics qualifiers.  

In what sounded like stern words, Palli said, “They (TTFI) are overreaching the court. I will issue a notice of contempt. I pass an order and you appoint a new person. This is shocking… I am expressing my anguish.

“I am of the view that the operation of the rule is required to the stayed till the next date of hearing. Respondent no. 2 (Sports Ministry)…Is itself inclined to hold an inquiry into the serious allegations by the petitioner. There is no reason why respondent no 1 (federation) should continue with its rule,” she ordered.

“Respondent no 2 will proceed to hold an inquiry at the earliest…Furnish a copy of the report to the court,” it was added.

Counsel Sachin Dutta, appearing for Batra said, “Some (tournaments) are starting from October 24 and world championship is in November. The event (Asian Table Tennis Championship) is next week and training happens in Pune,” as per PTI.

Advocate Hrishikesh Baruah, representing TTFI, defended the mandate by the federation and said that Roy was not even at the camp which Batra decided not to attend.

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