Bhaichung Bhutia, former Indian captain and one of the most popular names among the country’s footballers, filed an intervention application while the Supreme Court on Monday took up the hearing on petitions related to the election of the AIFF Executive Committee.
Bhutia tried to draw attention to “much needed reforms in the All India Football Federation (AIFF)”.
Bats for the welfare of the players
Bhutia urged the Supreme Court to approve the draft constitution finalized by the Committee of Administrators (CoA) as it promotes the welfare of the players over the vested interests that have controlled Indian football for years.
Bhutia requested the Supreme Court to abide by its earlier order despite objections from the world governing body – FIFA – which suspended the AIFF citing third-party interference in its functioning.
“Conducting the Under-17 Women’s World Cup is very important, but we cannot ignore the reforms made in the new constitution for that tournament,” Bhutia told The Hindu, explaining her move to file the intervention application.
“If you look at the history of independent India, there was no elite player to lead any federation and the Supreme Court’s decision to have 50% ex-Indian players in the Electoral College is a step forward,” said Bhutia.
The SC order on Monday sought to reset the electoral process in line with FIFA requirements, dissolve the CoA and remove 36 prominent players from the Electoral College.
“I hope the constitution that will be finalized after the completion of the U-17 tournament will give proper place to former players who are the most important stakeholders in football administration,” said Bhutia.
Dropped out of the race
The removal of players from the voting process also sees the former India captain drop out of the AIFF presidential race.
“My name was proposed by two former Indian players Deepak Mondal and Madhu Kumari, but now that the players are out of the Electoral College, my candidature will not count,” said Bhutia, adding that he has decided to file only for the post of president. Former players’ representative.
“I wanted the players to be seen as competent managers and to stand up to make their voices heard. Now that the situation has changed I have not decided on the future course of action,” he added.
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