The High Court of Karnataka on Wednesday dismissed a petition filed by Archana Girish Kamath, a table tennis player questioning the Table Tennis Federation of India’s (TTFI) decision of not selecting her for the national women’s TT team to represent the country in the ensuing Commonwealth Games 2022 to be held in the United Kingdom.
A Division Bench comprising Justice P.S. Dinesh Kumar and Justice C.M. Poonacha passed the order after the TTFI pointed out that her selection was done based on the existing criteria for selection of women players.
“These are the matters in the domain of expert committee…” the Bench observed while also noticing that Delhi High Court had recently dismissed a petition filed by another woman player.
It was also pointed out to the Bench that the decision on Ms. Kamath’s selection was made by the Committee of Administrator (CoA), which was appointed by the Delhi High Court earlier this year after finding serious lapses in the functioning of the erstwhile executive panel of the TTFI, and the CoA is headed by a retired chief justice of a High Court.
Senior advocate Vikram Huilgol, appearing for the TTFI, pointed out to the Bench that the CoA had discussed the recent performances of Ms. Kamath and had recorded its finding that “unfortunately, despite the exercise of the selector’s discretionary points in her favour, Archana is still unable to meet the grade… Archana’s national rankings are not at a high level…”
It was also pointed out that the criteria, on which Ms. Kamath is relying on for her selection, would come into force only from October 1, 2022 as parents of players and others have given representation for postponement of new criteria.
Mr. Huilgol also pointed out to the Bench that the TTFI had sent the list of five women players, including one reserve player, to the Indian Olympic Association on June 7, much before she filed the petition and the interim order passed by the court on June 16 not to send the list of players.
Denying her claim that her name was initially on the list of players for the CWG-2022 and its was changed arbitrarily, the TTFI made it clear that the final selection was made on June 6 and her name was found only in the list of probables.