Mumbai: The Indian Hockey Federation has shot off a letter to the Sports Ministry asking why it was not invited to the meeting called to finalise the probables and coaches of the national men's and women's teams in New Delhi on March 7.
The IHF, through a letter written by secretary Ashok Mathur to the secretary of the sports ministry, has protested the non-inclusion of its representatives at the meeting of the ministry, Sports Authority of India, government nominees and its rival body Hockey India.
"Why was the IHF, the sole recognised NSF (National Sports Federation) not invited for this meeting," is the query put to the ministry in the letter.
The IHF also wanted to know whether the coaching camp, that has commenced, has been "called by Hockey India or the ministry/SAI."
The IHF has asked the ministry to provide the minutes of the meeting in which the probables and coaches were picked.
"All the camps are funded by MYAS, then who has selected the probables and the coaches knowing fully well that Hockey India is a private body and they are not the national sports federation," Mathur said in his letter to the ministry.
"It is our humble request in the interest of the national game that a level playing field is maintained and the IHF which is the NSF in the country is not being deliberately sidelined as it seems these recent developments of the selection of coaches and probables would not have been done without our involvement."
"This definitely goes against the initiatives taken by your department keeping in mind our sincere effort to welcome HI constituents back to IHF fold or to constitute two-member committee comprising of representative each from IHF and HI for amicable settlement as per the Supreme Court directives,"
Mathur said in his letter. "We hereby put on record our strong objections for being deliberately sidelined/deprived our legitimate rights to govern the game of hockey in India," he added in the letter, a copy of which is with PTI.
The IHF secretary has also taken the chance to complain to the ministry that railway concessions were not made available to its players despite it being the NSF.
He wanted the ministry to step into the matter and instruct the railway authorities to do the needful ahead of the 56th women's senior nationals in Bangalore from April 6-14.