New Delhi, Nov 28, 2023
The Supreme Court on Tuesday set aside an interim order passed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court staying the election proceedings of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).
A bench of Justices Abhay S Oka and Pankaj Mithal said that it failed to understand how the entire process of election could have been set at naught by the High Court, adding that the proper course would have been to allow the election to be conducted and make the election subject to the outcome of the pending writ petition.
The bench directed the returning officer to proceed with the elections of the Executive Council of the WFI by publishing a revised election programme.
It clarified that the outcome of the election will be subject to the decision of the P&H High Court in the pending proceedings.
Earlier in October, the Supreme Court had called for the response of the Union government and others on a plea filed by the ad-hoc committee of WFI questioning the interim stay order passed by the High Court.
The elections – which were set to be held on August 12 – were stayed by a bench of Justice Vinod S, Bhardwaj of the High Court just one day before they were supposed to be conducted.
The special leave petition stated that the impugned HC order has caused grave prejudice to the WFI and the wrestling athletes in India because the United World Wrestling (UWW) – the international governing body for wrestling – has provisionally suspended its recognition solely on the ground of failure to complete the elections within the stipulated time period.
The day to day affairs of WFI are looked after by the ad hoc committee after the expiry of the term of its Executive Council. Earlier in July, the top court had lifted the Gauhati High Court’s stay on WFI polls.(Agency)