Olympic official Mool Chand Chowhan dies

September 11th, 2009 - 10:22 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Sep 11 (IANS) Mool Chand Chowhan, vice-president of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and secretary general of the Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI), died in Jaipur Friday after a brief illness. He was 82.
He is survived by three daughters.

Chowhan was cremated Friday at his hometown Ajmer.

Chowhan, who took over as TTFI secretary general soon after the New Delhi Asian Games in 1982, rose to become the vice president of the Asian Table Tennis Union, secretary general of the Commonwealth Table Tennis Federation and a director of the International Table Tennis Federation.

An influential official in the IOA’s top brass, Chowhan was actively involved in the 2010 Commonwealth Games Organising Committee as the vice chairman of the key Accommodation Committee.

Chowhan was also the chairman of the Rajasthan Sports Council 1989-92 in the rank of minister of state rank. During his tenure, the state developed massive sports infrastructure. A modern sports complex in Ajmer is testimony to his organisational abilities. The Petroleum Sports Promotion Board (PSPB) chipped in create a full-fledged table tennis academy in the complex.

“The sports fraternity is shocked by his death. India has lost a great sports adminstrator,” Indian Olympic Association President Suresh Kalmadi said.

“He was a great sports leader who helped and worked for the promotion of sports. He was awarded the Olympic Order by the International Olympic Committee for his commendable services for Indian sports,” Kalmadi said.

IOA Secretary General Randhir Singh remembered Chowhan as a “committed and sincere adminstrator.”

“He was so dedicated and commitment to his work. He held so many posts and national and international level and would discharge his duties with responsibility. Every week he would turn up for meetings without fail. You never had to remind him.

“In his last assignment, he was the chef-de-mission for the Asian Youth Games in Singapore two months back. He was not well, but still he went because he was nominated.

“It’s a sad day for me. Personally I have lost a good friend. He has done a lot for Table Tennis and for the Olympic movement,” Singh said.

During his tenure, India performed well in table tennis on the world stage, winning a gold medal at the Commonwealth championships and two gold medals at the 2006 Commonwealth Games for the first time.

India also won a host of medals at the junior level.

TTFI also ranks high in arranging exposure trips for juniors and bringing international tournaments to India.

“He connected well with the players. He knew each player personally. He would take care of the expenses of the junior players if they were not able to afford it,” said V.K. Bawa, who was long association with Chowhan as the Petroleum Sports Promotion Board secretary.

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