Frustrated with the Badminton Association of India’s failure to curb the over-age problem in age-group tournaments, a group of 37 parents have moved a writ petition in the Karnataka High Court asking the court to issue a directive to the federation for implementing a policy within a particular time frame.
The writ of mandamus was filed on November 20, 2018 and the High Court issued an emergent notice to BAI and Karnataka Badminton Association on November 30.
“We have been urging the BAI to take some concrete steps towards tackling the over age problem. We have even made presentations as to how a system can be put in place. But since BAI has not done anything in that direction, we were forced to move the court. With the game growing so fast, it is important that BAI takes a firm stand against over age players,” said Nilesh Prabhu, who has been fighting against the overage menace for the last few years.
[Latin, We comand.] A writ or order that is issued from a court of superior jurisdiction that commands an inerior tribunal, corporation, or individual to perform, or refrain from performing, a particular act, the performance oromission of which is required by law as an obligation.— https://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/writ+of+mandamus
It is worth mentioning that in the last few years, the Sports Authority of India has refused to fund tournament expenses of players who had failed to age verification test but most of these players were either allowed to travel for the said tournaments at their own cost or BAI decided to foot their bills.
In 2016, CBI’s Sports Integrity Unit had found four players guilty of age fraud and had submitted a detailed report to BAI, asking them to take further action. However, no action was taken against any of the players and one of them even represented India in an age-group tournament earlier this year.
The group of parents had made a detailed presentation to BAI based on the age verification reports of some of the players who have represented India in the last two years and the measures that can be taken to curb this menace.
While the BAI has been conducting their own age verification tests at national ranking tournaments for the past three years, the results of the tests are rarely made public and there have been no instances of a player been banned or suspended.
BAI rules also state that the birth certificate submitted by the players to get their BAI ID’s should be registered within 12 months of the date of birth. However, the rule isn’t being strictly implemented.
When contacted, BAI officials declined to comment on the subject.