Indian football: CoA submits draft AIFF constitution to Supreme Court

The final draft constitution of the Football Association of India, which was drafted by the Committee of Trustees (CoA), has been submitted to the Supreme Court for approval.

It was submitted to the Supreme Court on Friday, the AIFF said in a statement on Saturday.

Acting AIFF Secretary General Sunando Dhar said, “After a long series of discussions with various stakeholders, the draft constitution of AIFF has finally been submitted to the honorable court.

“I would like to congratulate everyone involved in the process, for this rapid progress, and I hope that with the new constitution in place, we can move forward with the development of Indian football.” The CoA, which was appointed by the Supreme Court on May 18 this year, includes Justice (Retired) Anil R Dave, India’s former Chief Electoral Commissioner, Dr SY Quraishi, and the former Indian captain Bhaskar Ganguly.

The Supreme Court ordered the CoA to help facilitate the passage of the constitution and prepare the electoral rolls with the aim of conducting the AIFF elections at the earliest.

Since then, while developing the draft constitution, the CoA has “devoted more than 150 hours of work and engaged with all AIFF stakeholders, including state associations, FIFA, the AFC, ISL and I-League clubs and reviewed the suggestions. transmitted by them.

Three days ago, the CoA sent the final draft constitution to world football’s governing body, FIFA.

The exercise was in line with strict deadlines set by the FIFA-AFC team which visited the country last month to take stock of the situation after the Supreme Court overturned the AIFF waiver directed by Praful Patel for not organizing elections in time. After much deliberation, we have finally agreed on a draft constitution that would bring the AIFF into line with the National Sports Code, and help it operate effectively as a member association of FIFA and the AFC,” Quraishi said.

“We are confident that with this series of changes, the federation will now be in a good position to guide Indian football further.” Justice Dave said: “We have taken into consideration all stakeholders involved in Indian football and their respective views on the new constitution.

“We also received suggestions from football fans across the country and considered them thoroughly and seriously. I wish the best to all parties involved as we all try to push the beautiful game forward in India. Former India goalkeeper and captain Ganguly praised everyone for putting together the draft constitution at such short notice.

“The amount of work that has gone into the draft constitution is indeed commendable and I sincerely thank everyone involved in its completion. We hope that with these new changes, football in our country will continue to grow more than ever. The final draft constitution was also given to the state associations which were represented in the discussions by a seven-member committee.

On June 23, the visiting FIFA-AFC team set deadlines to clean up the Indian football mess, asking stakeholders to get the national federation’s constitution approved by July 31 and hold elections. by September 15, otherwise the country could be banned. by the world body.

A FIFA ban would mean the U-17 Women’s World Cup, which will be held at three venues from October 11-30, could potentially be pulled from the country.

The next date for the Supreme Court hearing on the matter is July 21. Once the Supreme Court gives the green signal, a special general assembly of the AIFF should be convened in seven days to approve the new constitution.

The elections will then take place within 30 days of the approval of the new statutes by the AIFF General Assembly.

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