Maken to stick to Gill’s tenure and age guidelines

Thursday, January 20, 2011

NEW DELHI - Taking charge as the new sports minister, Ajay Maken backed his predecessor M.S. Gill’s controversial age and tenure restrictions for sports federations but said he wants to adopt a “non-confrontational” approach while implementing the ruling.

Maken also expressed his desire to see former players and young administrators with a sporting background at the helm of the federations.

“The intention of Mr. Gill on implementing the age and tenure guidelines had merit. But we can’t implement these with a confrontational approach. The dialogue needs to go on with the federations,” said Maken.

“Players’ role in sports management should be increased. How can a non-sporting person understand the passion in sports?

“I would like to see people who have played at a particular level to be in the administration. It is in the interest of sports. The issue is not about politics,” Maken said, making an indirect reference to politicians who head various national sports federations.

The sports ministry under Gill issued guidelines in May 2010 to limit the tenure of national sports federations chiefs to a maximum of 12 years and set the age limit at 70. Five heads of sports federations sought a stay order on the guidelines but the Delhi High Court in November gave a green signal to the ministry to implement them, following which the ministry has issued warning to such federations to fall in line or risk de-recognition.

Maken thanked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for elevating him to the “crucial” sports portfolio.

Filed under: Sports

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