Harassment Probe Against Cycling Coach: SAI’s Rules To Protect Women Athletes
Sexual Harassment Probe Against Cycling Coach: SAI's Rules to Protect Women Athletes
The Sports Authority of India (SAI) has issued a fresh set of guidelines to the National Sports Federations (NSFs), directing them to strengthen measures to ensure safety of women athletes.
This comes after a top cyclist alleged sexual harassment by the now sacked national coach R K Sharma. Earlier on 13 June, an FIR was filed against him even as the SAI said it will speak with the cycling contingent that travelled to Slovenia as part of its detailed investigation.
What are the guidelines issued? Here's all you need to know.
What is the key guideline issued?
Women coaches to mandatorily accompany the contingent with female athletes during both domestic and international travel.
But what happens if there's no female coach on the team?
There is no clarity on this. The SAI has directed NSFs to increase the strength of women coaches/support staff in the national coaching camps.
Stay tuned to this space for more information.
Who is the compliance officer that SAI wants camps to appoint?
Compliance Officer – both male and female – are to be appointed in all National Coaching Camps and Foreign Exposures.
The roles and responsibilities of the Compliance Officer includes:
Communicating regularly with athletes and others to ensure that the guidelines are being followed as well as enforce the Standard Operating Procedure on prevention of sexual harassment in sports.
They must also ensure that if any member reports a violation, the same should be reported earliest to the responsible authorities.
What were the allegations made by the cyclist?
Indian national team's cycling coach RK Sharma allegedly forced himself into the room of a top cyclist, offering her "post-training" massage, and stating that he "wants her to be his wife", the cyclist said, in her complaint emailed to the Sports Authority of India (SAI).
The coach also allegedly "forcefully" pulled her towards him, asking her to "sleep with him," the complainant added in her email, reported The Indian Express. The series of inappropriate behavior took place during the national team's camp in Slovenia, earlier in May.
The SAI has terminated the contract of Sharma after the allegations, and an FIR has also been filed – launching a formal probe into the matter.
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