Supreme Court directs Paralympian’s name to be included for Tokyo games

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The Supreme Court on Monday directed Paralympics Committee of India (PCI) to include the name of five-time Paralympian shooter Naresh Kumar Sharma in the list being recommended for the Tokyo Paralympics.

The committee was intimated of the urgent hearing taken up by the bench of justices A M Khanwilkar, B R Gavai and Krishna Murari but none appeared. The sports ministry said it had no objection if the name of Sharma is sent and the government would be happy if medals increase.

The Paralympics will begin in the Japan capital on August 24 and go on till September 5.

As the last date for sending the names for the event is August 2, the three-judge bench of the top court directed the committee to add the name of Sharma in the R-7 shooting event and report compliance by Tuesday. The court directed the order to be emailed to the president of Paralympics Committee.

Sharma, an Arjuna Award recipient, challenged an order of the Delhi high court which had posted his plea relating to his non-selection for the upcoming Tokyo Games for hearing on August 6.

The Paralympian had sought an urgent hearing pleading that any delay in hearing before the high court would render his plea seeking inclusion in the Indian contingent for the games infructuous as the last date for selection for the shooting event in Tokyo Paralympics is today.

The shooter said a division bench of the high court had on July 30 sought responses of the Paralympics Committee of India (PCI) and the Centre on his appeal against its single-judge order which had refused to interfere with his non-selection for the Games.

The high court had, however, said that PCI’s conduct in relation to the selection of another player over Sharma was “unbecoming of a public sporting body” which has to maintain a fair, transparent and inclusionary approach.

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