The Delhi High Court on 30th September issued a notice on the petition filed by Arjuna Awardee and international paraswimmer Prasanta Karmakar, who was asking for immediate stay on his suspension.
A single-judge bench of Justice Jyoti Singh heard the case and issued notice to the respondents to file the responses within a week.
Prasanta Karmakar was suspended in 2018 and was banned after he was accused of filming female swimmers during the country’s national championships the previous year. The swimming coach had allegedly asked an associate to do the filming. It was claimed that he was taking photographs of female swimmers with a camera on a tripod. He was rumoured to even have had a quarrel with the officials of Paralympics Committee of India (PCI) and refused to delete the photographs.
The petition was filed by the advocates of the petitioner, Amit Kumar Sharma and Satyam Singh Rajput, asking for “the direction to the Paralympics Committee of India to accept the entry of Karmakar for the IWAS World Games, 2020 so that he may achieve Minimum Qualification Standards (MQS), a prerequisite for participation of a swimmer in the Tokyo Paralympic Games.”
The advocate for the petitioner, Advocate Ashok Arora, appearing before the court submitted that “PCI had been suspended and derecognized by the Ministry of Youth and Affairs in years 2011, 2015, and 2019 and was further suspended by the International Paralympic Committee three times for its irregularity. PCI had always indulged in illegal activities. Mr. Arora further added that that PCI has not only suspended the Arjuna Awardee Prasanta Karmakar but also suspended its own, President Inderjit Rao, who is a Cabinet Minister.”
Additional Solicitor General Chetan Sharma affirmed that the petitioners have correctly submitted that the PCI was indulged in illegal activities and that is why PCI is still under suspension by the government.
Prasanta Karmakar is an Arjuna Awardee and the only Commonwealth and Asian Games medallist swimmer and the fastest para-swimmer in India. He even represented India as a swimming team coach for the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games and has been the national champion in his specific category for 16 consecutive years.
October 8 is set as the date for hearing of case the bench.