New Delhi: The media Wednesday staged a boycott at a promotional event of the forthcoming hockey World Cup here over the strict restrictions imposed by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) on the coverage of the tournament.
During the promotional event, organised by a major partner of the World Cup with the Indian team, media representatives protested the restrictons loudly and vehemently, not allowing FIH spokesman Arjen Meijer to speak. The journalists then walked out of the event.
Meijer also followed the journalists and tried to convince them to return by assuring them that their concerns will be looked at.
Meijer was also informed about how the media was treated for the last three weeks.
“Were not allowed to cover the practice session of the Indian team and we are also not allowed to enter the team hotels. How can media function under such circumstances?” the journalists asked.
Meijer said after coming out of the event: “I am helpless. I am on your side and that’s why I have come here. We will sort out all the accreditation issues by today. Let us not look into the past. I cannot change whatever has happened. But I will ensure that everything will be properly managed from now.”
The FIH had said in a statement that media access to the training sessions of the World Cup hockey teams would not be allowed without the activation of the accreditations, which are “expected” to come into effect only a day before the start of the World Cup on Sunday.
But after a meeting of the Coordination Commission of the Hero Honda World Cup, it was decided that media would be allowed access to the team’s practice sessions from Thursday. This, however, was not implemented.