Pressure is building on the All India Football Federation (AIFF) to hold its long-overdue elections. While several members have openly expressed their dissatisfaction in the last few months, the Government of India too has now taken note of this irregularity.
In an affidavit to the Supreme Court on April 8, in relation to the Special Leave Petition filed by Rahul Mehra against the AIFF, in which the Union of India is a respondent, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports (MYAS) confirmed that the AIFF president Praful Patel and his committee has no mandate to hold on to their offices. Patel, in December 2020, already completed his three terms and 12 years as president of the AIFF, the maximum permitted to a national sports federation (NSF) president as per the national sports code 2011, of which the AIFF is a signatory. The AIFF, however, didn’t hold the elections claiming it wasn’t possible because of a pending petition in the Supreme Court regarding its constitution. Jaydeep Basu, Arjun Pandit and Siddhanth Aney take us through the timeline and try to understand the logic being employed by the federation.