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An eventful evening unfolded at the Australian High Commission in New Delhi on Saturday, as a unique course titled ‘Advanced Sport Law and Governance’, was launched by the Centre for India Australia Studies at Jindal Global Law School (JGLS).
The course will be taught at the JGLS in association with the TC Beirne School of Law (University of Queensland).
Law students of the Queensland University, along with Professors Sarah Kelly and Shaun Star, will also attend a week long orientation program at JGLS.
Speaking at the event, the Deputy High Commissioner of the Australian High Commission Chris Elstoft stated,
“There are various education ties between India and Australia. We have a labour system of common (British) origin as well. Commercialisation of sports is rapidly taking place and there is increased importance of governance in sports. The sports federations also need better governance as this is a sphere where a lot of countries are struggling.”
Professor Shaun Star delved into the details of the course and said,
“During the week long program, we will be talking about doping in sports including the case of wrestler Narsingh Yadav. Education is really important whether it is for the players or for administrators to deal with corruption and fixing. Fundamentally, our laws are very similar as they have the same origin. But we differ in implementation.
We are trying to build more ties between India and Australia through soft diplomacy and education.”
Reiterating on the commonalities between India and Australia, former Australian Cricketer Michael Kasprowicz stated,
“There are three things that India and Australia have in common – commonwealth, curry and cricket.”
He further stated that he did his MBA from the University of Queensland and was probably asked to be a member of the Board of Cricket Australia because of his education. He emphasized on the importance of such courses which would be good for the sports as well as the administration.
Former captain of the Indian cricket team Bishan Singh Bedi shared that he first went to Australia in the 1960s and met his wife there. Since then, his relationship with Australia is alive and kicking.
“We need to create more such events. We should have also invited the BCCI officials here, as this would be more beneficial for them. A good sportsperson is one who is a good student of the game and a good administrator is one who is a good servant of the game. I still want to learn more about the game as well as administration.”
Elaborating on the need for such courses, Professor Sarah Kelly of the University of Queensland, said
“We have been reading about scandals in sports from corruption, fixing and organised crime to doping and injuries. The privacy of the players is also an issue. There is certainly a need for reforms. Quality and integrity are really required. We look forward to having a long partnership with India.”
JGLS had also recently became the first Indian law school to be recognized by the Law Council of Australia. The Centre for India Australia Studies at the law school has been tying up with various Australian firms, government departments in order to arrange internships for JGLS students.