Mr Praful Patel, President, All India Football Federation chaired AIFF’s Annual General Body Meeting which was held via video conferencing today (December 21, 2020).
Besides Mr Patel, AIFF General Secretary Mr Kushal Das, Senior Vice-President Mr Subrata Dutta, AIFF President Mr KMI Mather, Mr Manvendra Singh, AIFF Executive Committee Members, and members from affiliated State Associations also attended the Meeting, as did the two affiliated units – SSCB and RSPB.
Rajasthan FA and Andaman and Nicobar FA, along with Mr Subhash Chopra and Mr Jessiah Villavarayar were granted leave by the Chair.
Furthermore, observers from FIFA, Asian Football Confederation and Indian Olympic Association, FIFA Regional Development Managers also attended the online meet.
The AIFF AGM observed one minute’s silence as a mark of respect to legends of Football who passed away both in India, and at the global level.
“These are very difficult times, not just in India but across the World. The FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2020 was rescheduled to March 2021 and had to again be postponed to 2022 which is to be held in India,” Mr Patel stated. “We never wanted to host the World Cup in empty stadiums. I would like to thank FIFA for their support.”
With the conduct of the AIFF elections currently sub-judice, the AGM unanimously passed a resolution that the present Executive Committee under the leadership of President Mr Praful Patel should continue functioning till the Supreme Court provides a suitable direction for AIFF to hold its elections.
Mr Patel said that “this Executive Committee will not take any major financial or policy decisions during this extended period till the AIFF elections are held.” In fact, the AIFF Executive Committee has been only taking operational decisions since 2017 — from the time its Constitution became sub judice.
Mr Patel averred: “I have always looked at AIFF as my extended family. I have done whatever I could do to the best of my ability. I have tried to function in a democratic manner. I am thankful to all of you for giving me this wonderful support and assistance. I request you to protect the interests of Indian Football above all.”
The AGM was also apprised about various AIFF activities including the inaugural AIFF Masters programme, updates about digital programmes and AIFF TV, the Centre of Excellence in Kolkata, the GBLs, the Hero I-League Qualifiers and the Hero I-League which is slated to kick-off from January 9, 2021.
“There is no agenda for, or against anybody. We have always been neutral and have tried to streamline Indian football and take it to the next level,” Mr Patel concluded. “The unity of the football family needs to be kept intact.”