In the recent shock of event, the prestigious International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) has suspended the All India Football Federation (AIFF) from its organisation due to the allegation of undue influence from the third parties. Adding to the blow, the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2020, which was estimated to begin on October 11, has also been postponed. Thanks to the competent Praful Patel, the leader of the Nationalist Congress Party, India has lost the dream to dominate the world football league.
Praful Patel torpedoed Indian Football
Hearing the application to dissolve the Committee of Administrators (CoA) running the daily affairs of AIFF, Justice D Y Chandrachud said, “You tell us that there is an objection and you torpedo the tournament. Mr. Praful Patel is trying to torpedo the tournament. You try it also now. We will deal with you.”
The observation was made when the counsel informed the Court that FIFA’s suspension of the AIFF would result in losing the opportunity to host the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2020 scheduled to be held on 11 October this year.
Furthermore, playing in favour of Praful Patel, Kapil Sibal argued in the Court that “… I do not want to be any office-holder in this organisation at all… We had wanted the elections to be held earlier. Unfortunately, it was delayed. That’s how I continued. Because I am elected in FIFA, I wanted the Cup to come here, I brought the Cup here. But I knew what was running in their minds, so therefore I conveyed it.”
Praful Patel threatened to ban Indian Football
On August 10 this year, the SC-appointed CoA moved the Court to initiate the contempt proceedings against Praful Patel, former President of AIFF and officer-bearers of State Federations.
Mr. Praful, the Council Member of FIFA, is alleged to have orchestrated campaigns amongst the State Associations to undermine the SC’s directions related to AIFF.
Praful Patel allegedly threatened to suspend the 35 State Federations from FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation, according to the CoA. The Union Government and the State Federations were then persuaded to reconsider the order issued by the SC on August 3, 2022.
In the contempt application, the CoA also asked the SC to issue directions against Mr. Patel to forbid him from participating in and holding any football-related posts, which included debarring from the positions in FIFA and AFC.
The issue escalated, when in May this year, the SC relieved Praful Patel from the AIFF president post on his completion of12 years, the maximum term as per the Sports Code.
In a meeting with FIFA, Union Sports Ministry has stated that Praful Patel should be reinstated as AIFF president and Subrata Roy should be made the vice-president. Although the chairman of CoA, Mr. Ranjit Bajaj, has appraised them about the national law but FIFA seems to have been misled by Mr. Praful Patel.
Concerning the National Sports Code, the Committee of Administrators (CoA) was appointed by the Supreme Court on 10 November 2017. The aim was to expedite the process of formulating the constitution of the AIFF and to ensure the fair election of federation.
However, Mr Patel failed to work according to the Indian law. Mainly for personal benefit, the NCP leader Mr. Praful Patel not only torpedoed FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2020 but also destroyed the Indian dream to dominate World in Football.
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