National Sports Development Bill

Relevancy

  • G.S. Paper 2,3

Why the bill?

  • The National Sports Development draft bill was floated as a unique law through which sports associations could be freed from the clutches of politicians and reforms of clean governance and transparency could be implemented in these bodies.
  • Sadly, the bill never made it past the cabinet in 2011 and even now remains on the back burner despite the change in governments.
  • Incidentally, the draft bill ran through a number of issues and saw opposition from many quarters. It was contended then that the BCCI had refused to come under the sports bill and had even termed it draconian.

Bill and BCCI

  • The original version of the sports bill, which was first drafted two years ago targeted the BCCI, saying it will have to adhere to the regulations laid by the ministry like other national sports federations.

Mukul Mudgal Committee

  • A working group headed by Justice Mukul Mudgal had been advised to prepare the new draft sports bill.
  • The committee included a list of senior sportspersons such as Olympic gold medal-winning shooter Abhinav Bindra and former India hockey skipper Viren Rasquinha, sports administrators and legal experts.
  • The draft was submitted to sports minister Jitendra Singh, but has still not been passed and remains in cold storage as there seems to be no consensus.

Sports Code and Sports Bill

  • A sports code has been in place since then. The code is a set of guidelines for federations dependent on government funding.
  • These guidelines direct national sports federations to follow age caps, tenure limits and election procedures. Through the Supreme Court verdict, the BCCI now effectively follows a majority of the guidelines prescribed by the sports code.

Sports Code and state Federations

  • However, unlike the Lodha recommendations, the guidelines of the sports code do not apply to state bodies of these federations.
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