New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday lifted the stay imposed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court on the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) elections. The apex court’s decision paves the way for the much-awaited polls to proceed, bringing an end to the prolonged uncertainty surrounding the WFI’s governance.
Justices Abhay S Oka and Pankaj Mithal, while passing the order, expressed concerns over the high court’s decision to halt the entire election process based on a writ petition by the Haryana Wrestling Association. They emphasized that the proper course of action would have been to allow the elections to go ahead and subject the outcome to the pending writ petition’s verdict.
The Supreme Court’s intervention comes as a relief to the WFI, which had been grappling with the issue of delayed elections for several months. The United World Wrestling, the global governing body for wrestling, had even suspended the WFI due to its failure to conduct timely elections.
The ad-hoc committee, appointed by the Indian Olympic Association to oversee the WFI’s affairs, had challenged the high court’s stay order, arguing that it was obstructing the democratic process. The Supreme Court, in its ruling, acknowledged the ad-hoc committee’s stance and set aside the high court’s order.
With the Supreme Court’s decision, the returning officer is now empowered to proceed with the WFI elections by publishing a revised election schedule. However, the outcome of the elections will remain subject to any orders passed in the pending writ petition.