Sports Law by Anujaya Krishna

Diljith Manohar, II year LLM student, School of Legal Studies, CUSAT

jpegThe idea ‘Sports’ has evolved from being a mere recreational activity to a multi-billion industry. Indian scenario is no different, especially in the field of cricket which is considered a religion rather than a sport there has always been tremendous development.Sports events with massive investments, such as Indian Premier League (IPL), Formula One Championship at Buddha Circuit, Twenty 20, Indian Cricket league etc.  demands the intervention of law at different stages. In ‘Sports Law’ by Anujaya Krishna, the author identifies certain areas of sports where legal issues arise such as competition law, regulation of sports governing bodies, Sports injuries – issues, liability, health and safety issues – discrimination, working with children, intellectual property issues, broadcast rights, arbitration of issues in sports, harassment in sports, organisational matters etc.

Viewedfrom an Indian perspective, sports law is a concept still at its inception with very few authoritative works and academic discussions undertaken on it. The author,Anujaya Krishna, who herself is a sports enthusiast, had taken up sports law as the area to work on for her BA LLB dissertation program which later resulted in this book. The brave attempt to work on a concept which still awaits universal recognition as an independent branch of law, makes this book worth reviewed. Divided into five chapters, the book takes you into the subject in a logical sequence, educating you right from the basics. The bookwhich is easily comprehensible even to those untrained in law is a ready reckoner for this relatively new area of research.

Is there a need to deal sports law as an independent stream of law? What are the consequence when general legal principles are applied in sports situations? – Only peripheral discussion of these questions is done in Part II of chapter two. An in-depth dissection of the topic, laying a philosophical foundation, establishing the proper amalgamation of law into sports is desirable in this book. But the book serves good for the primary understanding of the various views insports law – Traditional/Orthodox view, Moderate Position and Radical Approach. Traditional view maintains that the term “sports law” is a misnomer and it is nothing but application of general laws into sports situations. Moderate view acknowledges the increased acceptance of sports law as a separate corpus of law but yet going through a phase of transformation. The radical school argues for the recognition of sports law as a new legal area while they admit that doctrinal overlap is inevitable phenomenon in every sphere of law.

Chapter three which deals with International and Indian perspective of sports law,had a wider scope for discussion but was restricted to mere enumeration of relevant provisions of international documents and Indian Law. The objective of first three chapters seems to be to give an insight into the topic as a prelude to the discussion of National Sports development Bill, 2011 in Chapter four.Core area of discussion in this book mainly revolves around the need for comprehensive sports legislations in India and a critical analysis of The National sports development Bill, 2011. This forms the Fourth chapter of the book which is divided into three parts that deals with preliminary features of the bill, major drawbacks of the Bill and Arguments against the bill respectively. This chapter traces the development of bill and its current status elaborating on every key areas that the bill propose to address such as eradication of doping, age-fraud and sexual harassment etc. The bill which is expect to fill the lacuna in sports law failed to address some core issues like  match fixing and infrastructure of sports academy.

It is evident from the writing that the author had undertaken an empirical study on the subject and made her analysis in the light of such study.Relevant legal provisions relating to sports in different laws are provided in the annexure for easy reference. This book being one of the few works in India on this area, is recommended for everyone who wants to get introduced to the concept of sports law, especially in Indian perspective.

Title – Sports Law

Author – Anujaya Krishna

Published by – Universal Law Publishing Co. Pvt. Ltd. 2014

ISBN-13 9789350354384

ISBN-10 9350354381