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Editorial: Pargat Singh downgrades himself (12/24/2010)
--K. Arumugam
Editorial: Pargat Singh downgrades himself

Like no other hockey player in the history of hockey, Punjab’s Pargat Singh dreamt of becoming president of Indian hockey.

As a first step, he went on to become Secretary of all powerful Punjab Hockey. He had managed to have his states’ powerful politician (a sitting Dy. Chief Minister) as his president.

When he pitched in the election of the Hockey India, after creating lot of media hype, and calling IOA chief Suresh Kalmadi the ‘ugly face’ Indian sports, we were all glad, after all someone worth from the players’ stable has come to count .

Shortly, later after losing the Hockey India president election, he informed us he is promoting an organization called ‘Clean Sports’. He is president of the NGO which has lot of athletes of proven caliber on its ranks.

We all went by whatever Pargat did because we found, after badminton ace Prakash Padukone (All England Champion and father of reigning Bollywood heartthrob Deepika), here is one player who is not only fit enough to take on the system, but also acquired enough status to do that.

It looks we are all almost wrong.

At a time Suresh Kalmadi’s properties and of those who worked with him in sports are being raided by Central Bureau of India, we are amazed, astonished, stunned and even ashamed to see Pargat is savouring a pittance thrown at him by one of the creations of Suresh Kalmadi called Hockey India.

All of a sudden HI announced Pargat Singh is Chairman of Development Committee.

To start with, this committee did not exist before in the HI set up. Therefore, it is apt to say it has been created to accommodate Pargat.

When KPS Gill’s regime was disbanded after Chile Disaster, the same group declared Aslam Sher Khan will guide the future of hockey. It made headlines. What we got subsequently was emergence of Sardar Md. Aslam and then Narinder Batra and their cronies, while the likes of Aslam Khans were systematically sidelined.

Now that India’s prospects of qualifying for the next Olympics is proving to be difficult each passing day, HI wants someone bill the cat to avoid the March 2008 situation in 2012. And want to create a analoguous situation as that of Aslam Sher Khans.

They found a scapegoat in Pargat Singh.

It is beyond my comprehension what has changed since Pargat contested the HI election and now.

Vidhya Stokes was replaced by unknown Mariamma Koshy.

Was Pargat Singh satisfied with this earth-shaking development so that he decided in his wisdom to leave all his supporter and become a part of Hockey India?

After India lost 0-8 to Australia in the CWG final, Pargat Singh thundered in his signature column published in Times of India (15th Oct 2010) entitled, ‘Hockey Officials must quit in national interest' thus, 'My advice to those who run and ruin hockey is they must quit in national interest'

This roar now seems to be hallow in the light of Pargat Singh’s enthusiastic 'defection' to their camp.

How all of a sudden the same set of officials who 'run and ruin' hockey has become so indispensable for Pargat so that he accepted to be a 'chairman', a post that can even at a long shot cannot revolutionize hockey!

Now we can put the pieces together and and try to understand why those players who played with him, and those who had vote, decided not to cast it in favour of Pargat in the HI election.

They, as hindsight proves, seemed to have understood the persona of Pargat Singh than any of us?

The policy of this site is to bring processes and systems into the functioning of the hockey administration, giving no mercy to personalities irrespective of the fact that whether they are legends, highly rewarded ones, mass icons etc. Because our concern is present day hockey, and nothing else.

On the same line, we wish to remind the readers another point. We support Pargat Singh as an emerging, able administrator. because hockey needs a make over and who else than Pargat can fit that. That’s why unbound enthusiasm to support him in the Hockey India election run up.

If Pargat Singh is going to be deciding the technical matters of Indian hockey, we have a different take, different perception and approach.

We would like to go by the proven, incontrovertible facts.

Firstly, Pargat Singh has not won gold at even Asian Games or Asia Cup, not to think of any medals at the World Cups, Olympics and Champions Trophies. He has therefore nothing to show as a player. Mere participation in the tournaments and leading them to disaster thereto do not mean anything great. These do not entitle anybody the divine right to indulge in learning at the cost of the national interests.

Please see the result of the only international tournament (4-Nation) that Pargat Singh coached in his post playing career: Lost to Germany 0-3, lost to Netherlands 1-6, lost to Australia 0-6. Do I have to say anything more on this subject?

So, it is better if Pargat Singh sticks to his ambition of becoming the president of hockey administration than to dabble in technical matters. Pargat views on technical matters are well-known, will remind us of stone-age hockey, I have no hesitation to state this again -- again and again.

If Pargat’s ambition is to select national coach and national team in future, it is better to dismiss him as a future hockey administrator, dump him as yet another self-serving, clueless Olympian.

Am really pity for Pargat Singh, who set a big target for himself, very ambitious and glorious one, but falters at the first step itself, at getting first fruit. At the same time I admire the political cunning of HI authorities who in one stroke made Pargat what he is today -- look little- belittled a big foe. If they attach so much importance to Pargat Singh, one of them, Secretary or President, would have resigned and installed in him in the place instead.

Why will they do when this gentleman is ready to be undersold.

If HI election is held today, Pargat will not even get five votes, this is for sure.

Because, most of them who voted for him are as confused as we are, and nurture a feeling of let down.

You too Pargat Singh. Its pity a mountain melts like a candle, can we say like a Pargat Singh.

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our hockey
by Rajendran Vijay on 1/8/2011 2:44:20 PM
He is a president material.. he will become one day, take it from me
Mr. Pargat Singh
by Renganathan K on 12/27/2010 9:16:10 AM
Dear Sir, This article is the one which is in elaborated manner and Stick2hockey exclusive. As a hockey fan, I can understand how much you love Mr.Singh and his Spirit of Hockey. Poor Administration is the one factor which put Indian hockey to lose its Glory. The reason behind Mr.Pargat Singh appointed into technical Committee is clear that, he must be ready to face Challenges in Field level (Obviously Olympic Qualifiers as of now)and to face criticism if team India failed to do so as administrators can do nothing in official level. So I'm sure he will reconsider himself before taking up that role. Thank You for your article in public interest of Indian Hockey. We are all Sure to follow your footsteps for our National Game.Good Luck Sir.