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Karamjyoti v. Union of India and Ors. - (High Court of Delhi) (11 Aug 2016)

Decision to represent India in a sporting event, best left to experts, interference by Court in selection criteria not called for.



Petitioner seeks quashing of action of Union of India and Sports Authority of India respectively in not selecting Petitioner for participation in Rio Paralympic Games, 2016. Further, mandamus is sought to select Petitioner for participation in the upcoming Paralympic Games, 2016 "Discus Throw" and to re-conduct selection trials in a fair and transparent manner. Petitioner submitted that, as per the International Paralympic Committee Regulations, since Petitioner has earned Quota, she alone has right to be sent for participation in upcoming Rio Paralympic Games, 2016.

Qualification System shows that, athletes, based on their rankings determined through the various methods specified, each obtain one qualification slot for their National Paralympic Committee (NPC). Qualification slot is allocated to National Paralympic Committee and not to individual athlete. Only in case of Bipartite Commission Invitation is a slot allocated to the Individual Athlete and not to the National Paralympic Committee. This, admittedly, is not a case of Bipartite Commission Invitation.

Agreeing with the view taken in case of Sushil Kumar v. Union of India & Ors., Court observed that, decision, who should represent India in a sporting event, is best left to experts. In matters of selecting the best possible candidate to represent India in an international competitive event, there cannot be any interference by this Court in the selection criteria set down by the concerned national sports federation and also as to how the relative merits of the different candidates is to be evaluated, which is for the experts to decide and not this Court.

In present case, concerned NSF (i.e. Sports Authority of India because of banning of Paralympic Committee of India) has decided to hold selection trials and all athletes male and female were asked to undergo the same. Selection has been made by the expert selection committee based on performance during Selection Trials and status of athletes in comparison to world rankings. While dismissing the Petition High Court held that, procedure adopted was not arbitrary, perverse or irrational. Selection has been done in a fair and transparent manner and no interference is called for.

Relevant : Sushil Kumar v. Union of India & Ors.


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