Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma will continue to be the president of the Badminton Association of India for the next four years after winning the governing body’s election for the post on Tuesday. Sarma, who is a minister in the Assam government, had taken over as the interim president of BAI last year after former chief Dr Akhilesh Das Gupta died following a cardiac arrest.
Ajay Singhania of the Haryana Badminton Association will be the BAI’s new general secretary after beating KK Sharma of the Rajasthan Badminton Association in the elections, which were held during the federation’s annual general body meeting. Member of Parliament and former Tamil Nadu Badminton Association President Dr Anbumani Ramadoss was elected as the treasurer uncontested, according to a press release.
“I would like to congratulate all the elected members and I am sure that everyone will fulfil their responsibilities to the best of their capacity,” Dr Sarma was quoted as saying after the elections. “Indian badminton has been on an all-time high and we as a federation will strive to take it forward and make Indian badminton to the top of the pedestal.”
He added, “I would also like to bring it to everyone’s notice that I, along with the entire office-bearers (sic), will will be working in [a] completely transparent manner and will work to make the Association the most professional National Sports Federation in the country.”
Retired Chief Justice of the High Courts of Jammu and Kashmir and Sikkim, Dr Aftab Hussain Saikia, was the returning officer and the electoral process was held under his watchful eyes. A total of 61 votes were cast by the 31 member affiliates of the BAI, with each state casting two votes except for Telengana, which is on a provisional affiliation. The Pondicherry Badminton Association was barred from voting as it currently stands as a defunct body.
Haryana Badminton Association President Devender Singh was elected unopposed as the senior vice-president of the BAI. Omar Rashid, secretary of the Assam Badminton Association, was elected as the Secretary (events), also unopposed.
A total of 42 posts were up for grabs including the position of president, senior vice-president, 12 vice Presidents, three secretaries, eight joint secretaries and 16 executive committee members. All the executive committee members were elected unanimously too.
Correction and clarifications: The article originally stated erroneously that Arun Lakhani was elected unopposed as the senior vice-president of the BAI. This has now been corrected.
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