CCI by its order dated March 16, 2016 has ordered detailed investigation against AFI for restricting organisation of marathons without permission for AFI.

The case has been referred by the Department of Sports, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Govt. of India. It was alleged that AFI has decided in its Annual General Meeting held on 11-12 April, 2015 to take action against the state units/ officials/ athletes who encourage unauthorised marathons without taking permission of AFI.

The CCI considered that in the market for ‘provision of services relating to organisation of athletic/ athletic activities in India’, AFI being the apex body for managing athletics in India and by virtue of its association with International Association of Athletics Federation(IAAF) and the Asian Athletics Association (AAA) and Indian Olympic Association, it is controlling athletic activities in the entire country. Thus, in relation to organisation of athletic activities in India, AFI is the supreme authority having control over all such events and activities. Thus, AFI was considered to be enjoying a position of dominance in the relevant market.

AFI is trying to impose discriminatory terms and conditions like mandatory permission for conducting national and international marathon meets and it is thereby restricting the entry of new entrants into the relevant market. The said conduct of AFI prima facie appears to be abuse of dominant position by AFI in terms of the provisions of Section 4 of the Act. The Director General (DG) has been directed to investigate the conduct of AFI for abuse of dominant position.

(Source: CCI: Order dated February 16, 2016. For full text see CCI website)