Kerala High Court orders AFI to include athlete Anu Raghavan in olympic squad

The Kerala High Court has asked the Athletics Federation of India to include Anu in relay squad, but the AFI told that the last date for inclusion was 18 July

Malayali athlete Anu Raghavan’s career seems to have been jinxed, as despite having a High Court order, it is unlikely that she will be able to participate in 2016 Rio Olympics.

The Kerala High Court on Wednesday asked the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) to include Anu Raghavan in the Indian 4×400 metre women’s relay squad for the upcoming Rio Olympics. But the order came too late as the AFI informed the court that the last date for the inclusion was 18 July and it is not possible to include her now.

Raghavan had approached the High Court stating that she had a better performance than Ashwini Akkunji, who is part of the Olympic team. But she was excluded and Ashwini was preferred for reasons unknown.

“I had made this clear to AFI officials and had sent them a mail that if I do not get a reply, I will approach the court,” Raghavan told reporters after hearing the verdict.

She was a member of the Indian relay team at last year’s World Championship in Beijing and the Asian meet in Wuhan, China.

After hearing the AFI and other parties, the court said that it was unfair on part of AFI officials to leave out Raghavan despite the fact that she was eligible.

“The reason that I got to know from others is that even though I had a better performance than Ashwini, she was selected because of her experience and her being a senior athlete,” Raghavan said.

The court, however, asked the AFI to file a detailed statement on 4 August and posted the case for 5 August.