Anu Raghavan

Kochi, July 27 (IANS) The Kerala High Court on Wednesday asked the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) to include Kerala athlete Anu Raghavan in the Indian 4×400 metres women’s relay squad for the upcoming Rio Olympics.

But the order has come too late as the AFI informed the court that the last date for the inclusion was over on July 18 and it was not possible to include her now.

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

“I had made this clear to the 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 the part of AFI officials to leave out Raghavan despite the fact that she was eligible.

“The reason what 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 was a senior athlete,” Raghavan said.

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

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