According to former Indian goalkeeper Kalyan Chaubey, his petition against the All India Football Federation (AIFF) could be heard by the Supreme Court on Monday, January 4. Speaking to PTI on Sunday, the former Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and Salgaonkar player said that today (Monday) could be a big day for Indian football.
Chaubey had filed the petition on December 16 asking the Supreme Court to direct AIFF to hold their elections at ‘an early date’. He had claimed that the AIFF are using underhand tactics to extend the stay of its existing executive committee led by AIFF President Praful Patel. He also said that as an ex-footballer, it was his duty to try and ‘protect the larger interest of football and promote democracy and good governance in the AIFF’.
However, on December 22, six days after he had filed the petition, the AIFF general house approved an extension on the current executive committee’s term till the apex court presents its ruling on a pending case. Incidentally, this ‘case’ refers to the application that the AIFF had moved before the Supreme Court in November, seeking continuation of the executive committee’s term till the time the court-appointed administrators could frame the federation’s new constitution to conduct elections. Praful Patel has meanwhile confirmed that he would not be contesting elections whenever they are held since he’s ineligible to do so as per the Sports Code.
Chaubey’s insistence that the AIFF executive committee is postponing the elections in an unconstitutional manner has found support from a few state associations as well. Moreover, the court-appointed administrators’ team comprising SY Quraishi and Bhaskar Ganguly have also claimed that they had already submitted the draft constitution in January 2020 as directed by the court. In light of all these events, today’s hearing, if it does arrive, will throw a little more light on the way forward for the AIFF and Indian football.