-Photo by AFP

KARACHI: The Pakistan Judo Federation (PJF) has strongly condemned Pakistan Olympic Association (POA)’s act of suspending their office-bearers, calling it an illegal and unlawful decision.

On the recommendation of an arbitration committee set up by them, the POA on Wednesday suspended Col Rana Shujaat Ali and Masood Ahmed till the final outcome of the arbitration proceedings filed by the Sindh Judo Association and the Punjab Judo Association to look into financial embezzlements, misuse of official powers and unconstitutional acts of the PJF.

It is worth mentioning here that the POA had asked the PJF top officials through a letter to ensure their presence before the arbitration committee on August 29.

The PJF officials have pointed out that in suspending the officials even before that, the POA has taken an illegal step that violates even its own constitution that states that any provincial disputes should be resolved by the presidents of the respective federations instead of taking the matter to the sports’ supreme body.

They also said that since the provincial associations have already gone to court over the matter, the existence of the arbitration committee becomes null and void.

It was also said that in the case of badminton, the Lahore High Court ruled recently that the POA did not have the right to form arbitration bodies. In view of that, forming an arbitration committee for judo should be considered as contempt of court.

And finally, the PJF officials claimed to not have received any letter of suspension from the higher authorities and only learnt about the development through media, which is why they, too, said that they were replying in the same manner.

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