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Requirement of a proper law in the Sports Industry


Name –  Siddhi B. Agrawal

College - School of Law, University of Mumbai, Thane Subcampus

India as a country is very popular for various sports like cricket, badminton, hockey etc which is chosen as a career option by many but only a few find success here. The country supports the aspirants by hosting various national as well as international events; however, one has to keep various considerations at the back of their minds. Some competitors occasionally use dishonest tactics to win games. In addition, there are numerous situations when strong restrictions must be passed in order to preserve the integrity of the events. Any individual liable for resorting to unfair means must be held liable for their actions.

India, tragically, has very few regulations, and cases utilizing unfair strategies are heard or held in India's high courts or Supreme Court. This is an issue since the Supreme Court and High Court judges don't all have similar levels of sports-related information, which could prompt inconsistent decisions. To create and propel a proper sports law, it is pivotal that regulations and guidelines connected with sports advance in India.

Sports Law in general means all the rules and regulations associated with the game and any disputes arising from the same. In addition to this, the issue of anti-doping and player transfer are other issues covered by sports law. Sports law can be broadly divided into two categories: National Sports Law - which deals with laws pertaining to international sporting events like Olympics or FIFA world cup; Regional Sports Law - which deals with laws pertaining to regional sporting events like IPL or UEFA Euro Cup. Generally speaking, sports law does not have any single context. As a result, neither the state nor the central government has established a single body or piece of legislation to regulate the sports business. However, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports organises the activities of different important participants or stakeholders in this subject. There are several independent organisations that deal with sports administration. These include the Board of Control for Cricket in India, Hockey India, Indian Olympic Association, and Sports Authority in India (SAI).


Whether played inside or outside, games are the fundamental part of sports. Nonetheless, when competitions are considered, they happen at both the national as well as international levels, where both the national and the international laws rule. Due to the fact that no place can apply a single law equally, there is no uniformity. Although sports law is supported by a number of existing laws, there isn't a single entity that can be referred to as sports law.

Antitrust and Labour Law, Intellectual Property Law, Contract Law, Laws of Taxation are a few areas which constitute various aspects of sports laws. Sport has been formally recognised by the United Nations as a means of enhancing health, education, and development. As a result, there is a need to organize the sports field with an appropriate legal framework.

The National Sports Development Code, 2011, governs the conduct of the National Sports Federations in India in the lack of a special statute for the entire country. Despite the fact that sports are included in Entry 33 of the State List, Seventh Schedule of the Indian Constitution, the Delhi High Court maintained the legality of the above-mentioned law in Indian Olympic Association v. Union of India.[2] There are two more proposed Central legislation, the National Sports Development Bill, 2013 and the Prevention of Sporting Fraud Bill, 2013, that, if passed, would add to the evidence that sports law exists in India.

Role of Indian Judiciary

In India, there have been disputes over broadcasting rights and arbitrary acts by sports officials. The Supreme Court's decision in Zee Telefilms [3] is known as the "Magna Carta of Indian Sports Law." In this instance, the issue was BCCI's arbitrary cancellation of a broadcasting rights agreement. 

In the case of K. Murugan v. Fencing Association of India, Jabalpur, [4] the significance of sports was emphasised. The issue at hand was the election of members to the Indian Olympic Association's executive council.


If and when any issue arises between the Authority and the Sportsman, the Sports Authority would be a party to the dispute as well as the Adjudicator

If the Sportsman wishes to approach the Judiciary, there is a chance of delay in the case getting disposed off as there are various aspects related to Sports that a judge may not be well equipped. 

In my opinion the last remedy to which a sportsman may resort to is approaching the Dispute Resolution Bodies. Many models in Canada, Ireland and Australia prove success to Alternative Dispute Mechanism with respect to disputes in the Sports field. The Alternative Dispute Resolution method provides the parties with timely hearings, reduced total expenses, confidentiality, and flexibility. Furthermore, arbitrators are subject matter experts. Apart from the success rate of sports dispute resolution, entities specialised in alternative conflict resolution mechanisms such as the Court of Arbitration of Sports, these are only a few of the benefits of using alternative dispute resolution.


[1] Shubham Borkar & Parimal Kashyap, Sports Law in India, Khurana & Khurana, (Jan. 4, 2019, 12:00 p.m.),

[2] Indian Olympic Association v. Union of India, (2014) 212 DLT 389.

[3] Zee Telefilms v. Union of India, (2005) 4 SCC 649.

[4] K. Murugan v. Fencing Association of India, 1991 SCR (1) 658.


  1. It's a hot topic these days. After reading it, I understood the concept in detail, thanks for sharing.

  2. I have found it extremely helpful and wonderful information. It is so appreciated!!

  3. Well explained topic. Keep up the good work.


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