Union sports minister Kiren Rijiju on Saturday said that the government had no right to interfere in selection rules of sports persons.

Referring to Nikhat Zareen’s request for a trial bout against six-time world champion Mary Kom, Rijiju said that he had asked the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) to solve the matter in a transparent manner.

Also read: Kiren Rijiju responds to Nikhat Zareen’s tweet on trial bout against Mary Kom

While speaking at a felicitation programme of the Indian women boxing team, Rijiju also said that the government cannot dictate the sports federations on the ways of selecting a sportsperson for a competition.

“We have to understand one thing, govt can’t dictate the federations or get involved in the process of selection,” Rijiju added.

He also said that every person has a right to seek solution to their problems and it is his duty as a minister to ask a sports federation to solve his/her issue in a bias free manner.

“If there are anomalies and certain things which are not in the interest of sports we make advisory suggestions. Olympic charter is clear that govt shouldn’t interfere in the functioning and administration of a federation,” Rijiju added.

During the function, Rijiju praised the women boxing team that returned with four medals from the World Championships in Russia.

It may be mentioned that Zareen on Thursday tweeted requesting a trial bout against Mary Kom for selection of India’s squad for 2020 Tokyo Olympic qualifiers.

Responding to her tweet, Rijiju replied, “I’ll surely convey to Boxing Federation to take the best decision keeping in mind the best interest of the nation, sports & athletes.”

“Although, a minister should not be involved in the selection of the players by the Sports Federations which is autonomous as per Olympic charter,” he added.

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