Mumbai, June 20: Following the apology sent by shuttler Kidambi Srikanth, the Badminton Association of India (BAI) recommended Kidambi Srikanth for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award, the highest sporting honor in India. The apology to the federation came as for his conduct during the Asian Championship earlier this year.
"Former world number one Srikanth and Prannoy had left the squad at Asian Badminton Championship in Manila in February, despite advice not to leave, which put India`s chances of winning the historic medal at the championship in lurch," the BAI said in a statement.
Due to their leaving the squad India missed out winning the medal after they lost in the semi-finals against Indonesia. This action by both of them led BAI not to nominate either of them on disciplinary grounds for this year's National Sports Awards. However, Srikanth has tendered an unconditional apology but HS Prannoy has been given 15 days to respond to his misconduct.
"We have received an email from Srikanth in which he has accepted the mistake and he has also promised to not indulge in such activities in the future. Considering the talent of Srikanth and his accomplishments, we have decided to recommend his name for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award," BAI General Secretary Ajay Singhania said.
Earlier this month, Prannoy on social networking site had slammed the badminton governing body and questioned the selection criteria for the Arjuna Award. The shuttler stated that the players who have won nothing are recommended, while the players who have medals to their credit have been snubbed. On the other hand, BAI recommended the doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty and men`s singles player Sameer Verma for the Arjuna Award.
With BAI implementing strict policies of disciplinary actions going forward, Pronnoy has been asked to respond in 15 days' time on his misconduct. The shuttler had slammed federation, fellow players and went on to say that `country is a joke` on social media and in press interviews.
"There are several instances of disciplinary issues with Prannoy. The federation had been very tolerant all this while but in the recent past, his attitude has forced BAI to take action and also relook at the disciplinary policies. A show-cause letter has been issued for the remarks he made. If the player fails to respond in the allotted time, BAI will be taking stern action against the shuttler," Singhania said.
BAI is developing a code of conduct for its players, coaches, and technical officials which has to be abided strictly.