Batra, Roy to appear before five member TTFI inquiry panel

Manika Batra became the first female table tennis player from India to reach the round of 32 at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. ANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT/AFP via Getty Images

Manika Batra and Soumyadeep Roy will be asked to appear before a five-member inquiry panel to record their statements and produce proofs to corroborate their respective claims, the Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI) decided in its executive committee meeting on Saturday. The inquiry panel will submit its report in six weeks.

Manika had, in her reply to TTFI's show-cause notice, alleged that national coach Roy had "pressurized her to concede" her match against "his student" Sutirtha Mukherjee (who trains under Roy at his private academy in Kolkata) during the Asian Olympic Qualification tournament in March this year.

Asked to respond to the charges, Roy has in his communication to TTFI, denied the allegations, it is learnt. "He has also pointed out that he would have had no need to do so in the first place since Manika had lost to Sutirtha on previous two occasions and also mathematically, even if Sutirtha lost to Manika, she still stood a qualification chance. He has claimed to have proof so he will be asked to present them before the panel. Manika too will be asked to do the same and both will have the opportunity to record their statements," a source close to the development told ESPN.

TTFI vice-president Chiranjib Choudhuri will serve as chairman of the five-member panel which will comprise two other executive committee members and two legal experts.