Banned shooters could get a reprieve, NRAI chief to persuade governing body for a stay

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New Delhi, Feb 8 (PTI) There could, after all, be a reprieve for the 15 shooters recently banned by the National Rifle Association of India's governing body from participating in the next national championships on disciplinary grounds.

The shooters, including Tokyo Olympics quota holder Yashaswini Deswal, were prohibited from competing at the nationals after they took part in unrecognised online tournaments last year without the approval of the sport's apex body in the country.

NRAI president Raninder Singh on Monday said that he would be 'persuading' the federation's general body to 'stay the recent decision' when they meet on March 5.

'It has always been our endeavour to act in the best interests of our Sport and our shooters. As such, no one is as pained as us when at times severe action is needed to be taken on anyone belonging to the shooting fraternity, most of all, on our dear shooters,' Singh said in a press release issued by the NRAI.

'I received several requests from the parents and the affected shooters themselves on the recent decision taken by the governing body. As such I have decided to refer the decision to the general body, scheduled to meet early next month, and persuade them to not implement the said decision.

'However, this will certainly be a one-off, and any such disciplinary breach, will not be tolerated in the future.' During the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup in Rio de Janeiro in 2019, Yashaswini defeated former Olympic and world champion Olena Kostevych of Ukraine to win the women's gold and a quota place for the Olympics.

In a meeting held last week, the governing body of the NRAI had banned the following shooters from taking part in the next Nationals.

Sriharsha R. Devaraddi, Keshav Sharma, Vikram Singh Bhati, Imroz Ahmed, Pratyush Aman Barik, Yashaswini Singh Deswal, Tarun Kumar Dahiya, Meenal Yadav, Tejpreet Kaur Oberoi, Dilpreet Singh, Rajeev Ranjan, Visnu Shivraj Pandian, Krishan Kumar, Jyothi H Sannakki, Ishank Ahuja. PTI AH BS BS