War of words erupts between IOA president and secretary general, this time on use of official email | More sports News – Times of India

NEW DELHI: A war of words broke out on Wednesday between Indian Olympic Association president Narinder Batra and secretary general Rajeev Mehta over the use of the organisation’s official email ID and website, adding to their long-standing feud over several other issues.
Batra issued a statement earlier in the day that he has got approval from the majority of the 31 executive council (EC) members to change the official email ID and website of the IOA.
“The official email ID of IOA effective immediately will only be and the earlier official email of IOA, i.e. becomes invalid with immediate effect,” Batra said in the statement.
“All mails sent by the secretary general IOA after he changed the password and refused to share the same with the IOA office staff who operated the emails…will be treated as invalid and will have no legal sanctity.
“…a new website (will be) created for IOA on priority and that will be the only official website of IOA. The present website of IOA becomes invalid effective immediately,” Batra added.
He said he has got approvals from 18 out of 31 EC members and so the “resolution by circulation” has become “effective immediately”.
Within hours, Mehta hit back saying that the resolution was “unlawful” as the term of the EC “has already expired on December 14, 2021”. He went to the extent of saying that Batra’s act “amounts to commission of offence punishable under Information and Technology Act, 2000 and Indian Penal Code”.
“…your plan/proposal…all smack of foul play in hijacking the whole system to manipulate the data/information for your own benefits ahead of elections of IOA… the same is unlawful and how any such resolution could be proposed and passed by EC when term of the EC has already expired on December 14, 2021,” Mehta said in a statement.
“There is no EC in place, therefore, there can be no resolution proposed or passed. Otherwise also the resolution in question is beyond the competence and authority of the Executive Council.”
The term of the current office bearers has ended on December 14 last year and the elections of a new dispensation could not be held before the deadline due to a pending case in the Delhi High Court which had ordered “status quo” on an application by a senior advocate.
The HC had ordered the IOA members to “deliberate and vote” on “amendments to the constitution/articles of association of the IOA, as may be agreed and/or requisite in terms of the National Sports Code, the IOC Charter and orders of this court and the Supreme Court.”
Mehta said the system of computer network and other electronic means of communications of the IOA were used in establishing communications with International Olympic Committee, National Olympic Committees, International Sports Federations, foreign governments as well as government of India, various state governments and National Federations among others and cannot be changed without following the constitution of the IOA.
“Your unwarranted interference and your unilateral/unlawful act designed to change official website and email ID of Indian Olympic Association, amounts to commission of offence punishable under Information and Technology Act, 2000 and Indian Penal Code,” he said.
“You are hereby called upon to withdraw letter of February 8, 2022 (addressed to the EC members) failing which I will be compelled to institute appropriate proceedings against you and others for commission of offence under I.T. Act and Indian Penal Code.”
Mehta also described the letter sent by Batra to the EC members to change the official email ID and website of the IOA to be “based on false and concocted facts and has been issued without any authority”.
Batra and Mehta have been at loggerheads during major part of the current tenure — which began in December 2017 — with the two not in the same page on many issues, ranging from their respective powers, appointment of committees, venue of meetings.
The two factions led by the duo have been accusing each for various wrong doings from time to time.

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