Expressing displeasure over the refusal of visa to badminton player Prajakta Sawant for her trip to London to participate in the All England Open Championship, the Bombay High Court on Tuesday said the Union Government could have helped the shuttler if it wanted.
A division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice A V Mohta was hearing a petition filed by 19-year-old Sawant, who had alleged mental harassment by chief national coach Pullela Gopichand after she was refused entry to the All India National Coaching Camp in Hyderabad.
Sawant also alleged that Gopichand, being the chief national coach and a member of the selection committee of the Badminton Association of India (BAI), promoted players from his own private academy Pullela Gopichand Badminton Academy.
Last week, Sawant's lawyer Piyush Shah informed the court that she has been refused visa by the UK Embassy for her trip to participate in the All England Open Championship commencing March 5.
The court had then asked the union government and Union Sports ministry to help Sawant in getting visa by taking up her case with the UK Embassy.
The court was today informed that Sawant could not procure a visa and hence could not go to London.
"This is really unfortunate. If the Union Government wanted, it could have seen to it that she got her visa," the bench said.
The court has now directed Sawant's lawyer to submit a list of other tournaments she would like to take part in.
The matter has been posted for hearing next week.