Mattoo's Resignation Accepted, Stokes To Head Hockey India
A K Mattoo's resignation as Hockey India president and treasurer of Commonwealth Games Organising Committee was on Monday accepted with "great reluctance", paving the way for new office-bearers to take over from the veteran administrator.
Mattoo, who had put in his papers after being deeply hurt by the allegations levelled against him during the recent hockey rebellion, stuck to his stand of not reconsidering his decision despite request from IOA president Suresh Kalmadi and other senior colleagues.
Vidya Stokes, currently a vice president in Hockey India, will take over as president till the February 7 election, while secretary general of All India Tennis Association Anil Khanna will be the new treasurer in the CWF Organising Committee.
"It is with great reluctance and after consulting my senior colleagues I have decided to accept Mattoo's resignation as treasurer of the Organising Committee," Kalmadi, the OC chairman, said in a statement.
"I wish I could have persuaded him to change his mind and not have to make this statement. We tried hard to convince Mattoo to stay on but he has made up his mind. We have to respect his sentiment and accept his wish to retire from sports administration," he said.
Kalmadi said that his valuable inputs during the home stretch of the Commonwealth Games preparation would be missed. "We wish to place on record our appreciation of his meticulous work over a number of years."
Lalit Bhanot, the OC secretary general, also said that efforts were made to convince Mattoo to take back his resignation but he had made up his mind.
The Hockey India executive committee met here today to discuss Mattoo's resignation and asked Stokes to take over charge till the elections were over.
"We tried to convince him to continue but he did not agree, so the executive committee accepted his resignation. As a senior vice president, I have been asked to take over the charge for the time being," Stokes told reporters.
Asked about the reasons for Mattoo's sudden resignation, Stokes said, "He must be having certain problems but we cannot explain it."
Mattoo had sent in his resignation two days back to Kalmadi, saying he has made up his mind to "take retirement from sports administration".
"I have submitted my resignation to Kalmadi and I now want to take retirement from sports administration. I have served for 40 years and it has been long and fruitful innings," Mattoo said.
Mattoo had been at the center of a players' rebellion last week over non-payment of dues. He had pleaded with the players to continue training and wait until after the World Cup for their payments, an offer that was outrightly rejected by the striking campers.
The matter was later resolved with Kalmadi brokering a compromise deal after team sponsor Sahara India immediately released Rs one crore for distribution among the players. PTI