By Duncan Mackay

Suresh_Kalmadi_getting_into_car_April_25_2011April 26 - India risk missing London 2012 after the Government warned that they are prepared to intervene to ensure that Suresh Kalmadi is removed as the head of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA).

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) have repeatedly warned India's Government that they must not get involved in the administration of sport in the country by trying to influence the election of senior officials.

But Sports Minister Ajay Maken has told the IOA that if they do not elect a new President to replace Kalmadi following his arrest yesterday on corruption charges linked to the Commonwealth Games then they will take legal action.

"What we have decided here in the Sports Ministry is that as soon as the official arrest of Suresh Kalmadi is announced by the CBI, we are going to write to the IOA that they should elect a new President," Maken said.

"The person who is in jail or who has been charge-sheeted, it would not be in the national interest that he should represent the country anymore.

"As soon as official confirmation of his arrest comes, we are going to request the IOA to elect someone."

The 66-year-old Kalmadi, who has been President of the IOA since 1996, appeared in court in Delhi this morning on charges related to the awarding of Games contracts, including a £450,000 ($743,000) deal with a London firm over the staging of the Queens Baton relay and a contract with Swiss Timing.

India were warned in January by the IOC that they were faced being banned from London following its failure to adopt proposals agreed following a meeting in Lausanne last June, including the Government respecting the autonomy of the IOA.

But Maken appears determined to remove Kalmadi, who was the chairman of the Organising Committee for last year's Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

"We would also be writing to the Attorney general seeking his legal advice," he said.

"The Government can also take action on its own if the IOA fails to take any action against him.

"If required, we will take action on our own.

"We will first write to the IOA to remove him, elect a President and simultaneously we would also write to the AG to give us some advice on the matter."

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Related stories
April 2011: Kalmadi arrested on Commonwealth Games corruption charges
February 2011: Kalmadi "to be arrested" but hits back at Government
February 2011: Kalmadi under more pressure as two closest aides arrested in corruption probe
January 2011: Kalmadi claims sacking as Delhi 2010 chief is illegal
January 2011: Kalmadi sacked as chairman of Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games Organising Committee