The Indian Olympic Association is the governing body for the Olympic movement in India. It is an affiliated member of multiple international sports committees and organizations, such as the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), and the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA).
The organization is recognized by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, administers sports governance and the welfare of athletes, and oversees the representation of athletes and teams participating in international multi-sport competitions.
Inception and Governance
#1 Sir Dorabji Tata (1927-1928)
Maharaja Bhupinder Singh was the ruler of the princely state of Patiala from 1900 to 1938. The Indian Royal was a cricket player who captained the Indian team that visited England in 1911 and played in 27 first-class matches between 1915 and 1937. He endowed the Ranji Trophy, which is still a major domestic tournament today.
The last ruler of Patiala (1938–1971) and an Indian cricketer who played in a Test match in 1934, he served as the president of the IOA between 1938 and 1960, and was instrumental in organizing the Asian Games in the country. He was also president of the BCCI and chairman of the Indian Horticulture Development Council. In his later life, he was a delegate to the UN General Assembly, UNESCO and headed the Indian delegation to FAO in the 1950s and 1960s.
He was an Indian first-class cricketer and the son of Maharaja Bhupinder Singh and Yadavindra Singh. After his short cricket career, he was an active sports administrator. Bhalindra Singh was a member of the IOC from 1947–92 and the president of the IOA from 1960–75. He was instrumental in organizing the 9th Asian Games in Delhi in 1982.
#5 Om Prakash Mehra (1975-1980)
Air Chief Marshal Om Prakash Mehra, after an illustrious Air Force career, represented India at UNESCO, received Padma Vibushan, and served as the Governor of Maharashtra and Rajasthan before being elected President of the IOA in 1975. He was responsible for hosting the 1982 Asian Games. He presided over the Olympic Council of Asia between 1978 and 1980 and continued to be the honorary life president.
From 1980 to 1984, the Maharajah of Patiala reclaimed office as President of IOA.
#7 Vidya Charan Shukla (1984-1987)
Sivanthi Adityan was an educationalist, an industrialist, a philanthropist, and an Indian media baron who ran the Tamil newspapers "Dina Thanthi" and "Maalai Malar." Being an avid sportsman who trained every day, he was at the helm of IOA from 1987 to 1996. He was instrumental in bringing the South Asian Federation Games to India and served as vice president of the Olympic Council of Asia. The International Olympic Committee conferred upon him the "Sports and Study Award" in 1987 and the "Olympic Order of Merit" in 1995 in recognition of outstanding service for the development of sports and education.
Suresh is an Indian politician who headed the IOA from 1996 to 2011. He also served as the president of the Asian Athletics Association from 2000 to 2013, and was named its life president in 2015. In December 2016, the Indian Olympic Association named him as its lifetime patron.
Abhay Singh Chautala was the 10th President of the Indian Olympic Association. He was preceded by Vijay Kumar Malhotra as the acting President of the IOA. He has been a torchbearer for sports development in Haryana. He introduced new policies that announced sports quota reservations for government jobs and in educational institutions, which significantly boosted sports and games in the state. He further set up stadiums and coaching centers in rural areas.
#11 Narayana Ramachandran (2014-2017)
Narayana Ramachandran is an Indian squash administrator and triathlon administrator who served as the President of the WSF (World Squash Federation). He further served as the 12th president of the IOA from February 9, 2014, to December 14, 2017.
Narinder played hockey between 1970 and 1980 and competed at various levels. Between 2003 and 2013, Batra was Treasurer of the Delhi Cricket Association and Vice President of the Asian Hockey Federation, President of Hockey Jammu & Kashmir between 2012 and 2014, President of Hockey India between 2014 and 2016, President of the Commonwealth Games Association of India in 2001; Vice President of the IOA from 2012 to 2014, Associate VP from 2013 to 2017, and then elected President.
Pilavullakandi Thekkeraparambil Usha, more often known as the "Queen of Indian Track and Field," is a retired Indian track and field athlete. She has had a long association with Indian athletics since 1979 and has won four Asian gold medals and seven silver medals. She came into the limelight yet again when she was elected President of the IOA unopposed earlier this month. She has made history as the first female president of the IOA in 95 years.