In a major development in the early hours on Tuesday, August 16, FIFA imposed a ban on the All India Football Federation (AIFF) due to third-party influence.Following FIFA’s shocking ban on AIFF that will strip India of the right to host the upcoming U-17 Women’s World Cup, current footballer Habibur Rehman Mondal and ex-footballer Kalyan Choubey have given their take on the massive saga that has left Indian fans furious and shell-shocked.
Habibur Rehman & Choubey comment on FIFA’s ban
While speaking in an exclusive telephonic conversation with Republic TV, Habibur Rehman Mondal said, “It is very disappointing to hear about FIFA’s ban as an Indian player.” He went on to explain the reason for FIFA’s ban by stating that the world footballing body had asked the AIFF to make an executive committee. However, since this process was delayed despite several notices given to the AIFF, it is understood that FIFA had no choice but to ban the Indian football association.
As a result of FIFA’s decision, Mondal added, “I urge the officials of the All India Football Federation to make a committee as soon as possible.” When asked if he believes that the involvement of politicians has resulted in the ban on AIFF, Mondal responded by stating, “I do not believe that politicians should be the president of our football body as we have several former players like Baichung Bhutia, who understand the game well.”
Meanwhile, former Indian goalkeeper Kalyan Choubey added, “It is very disappointing to hear about FIFA’s ban. When Praful Patel was elected as the president of AIFF in 2016, that election was not according to the norm. And therefore, since 2017 this issue is pending that the All India Football Federation needs to conduct an election and they need to run this federation on democratic values.”
He concluded his statement by mentioning that he has complete faith in the Supreme Court that they will make a decision in the best interests of Indian football.
FIFA explains decision to ban AIFF
FIFA released a detailed statement on August 16 to confirm its decision of banning AIFF. Their statement read, “The Bureau of the FIFA Council has unanimously decided to suspend the All India Football Federation (AIFF) with immediate effect due to undue influence from third parties, which constitutes a serious violation of the FIFA Statutes. The suspension means that the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022, scheduled to take place in India on 11-30 October 2022, cannot currently be held in India as planned.”
It is understood that FIFA wants the AIFF to carry out democratic elections to elect a new president, having suspected ‘undue influence from third parties,’ something which is a serious violation of their statutes.