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Hockey scandal: Kaushik resigns, videographer sacked

July 21, 2010 19:04 IST

Indian women's hockey coach M K Kaushik resigned on Wednesday in the wake of the sex scandal that has rocked Indian hockey.

Hockey India secretary-general Narinder Batra told reporters that Kaushik had submitted his resignation to interim president Vidya Stokes.

"Kaushik has submitted his resignation to Hockey India interim president Vidya Stokes. The president will take a decision," Batra said, after a hearing of the player who made the sexual harassment charges, the coaching staff and women's hockey officials.

Kaushik, who earlier on Wednesday, said the allegations are a conspiracy against him, will not be part of the team for the Asian Champions Trophy in Korea, from July 27, pending an inquiry into the sex scandal by a four-member panel comprising Rajiv Mehta (chairman), former India Olympians Zafar Iqbal and Ajit Pal Singh and Sudharsan Pathak.

The videographer Basavraj, whose photographs with a prostitute plunged the game into a moral crisis, has already been sacked.

Batra said the four-member panel will submit its report to Hockey India on Friday and HI will, in turn, make its recommendations to the Sports Authority of India.

"The panel heard all the parties and they have sought time till tomorrow to make their replies. The panel will submit to us their report and we will proceed from there," he said.

Batra, however, said Hockey India has no power to take action against the videographer or any other coaching staff.

"We will submit our report with recommendations to the SAI which can take action according to the government service rules. The coach or the videographer are not working under us. They are employees of SAI.

"I have taken legal advice also. Nobody is guilty until proved. But, ultimately, it is the job of SAI what action to be taken against anybody who is found guilty," Batra said.

Asked how many players signed the letter to Hockey India, alleging

sexual harassment of a woman player, Batra replied, "Besides the player, 31 other players signed the letter supporting her."

Zafar Iqbal, one of the panel members, though, almost absolved Kaushik of any wrongdoing, saying the case of the woman player "was not a strong one" and her complaints were sometimes "dicey".

"According to me it appears that the case is not a very strong one. It should have been sorted out much earlier. It had been going on for around six months. I am not defending anybody; who are guilty will come out soon.

"But the coach (Kaushik) has been attached with the women's team since 1991 and no complaint had come earlier. He also played hockey with us and we know him. Sometimes her allegations are very dicey," said the former India captain.

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