Saturday, March 25, 2023

After SC order, returning officer issues fresh dates for AIFF elections

After the termination of the Committee of Administrators (CoA), as demanded by the international football federation (FIFA), the returning officer issued fresh dates for the elections to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) Executive Committee.

The Supreme Court had on Monday said that the Executive Council (EC) of the AIFF shall consist of 23 persons — 17 members (inclding the president, treasurer and vice-president) to be elected by the electoral college consisting of 35 associations representing states/union territories, and six members shall be drawn from eminent players — comprising four men and two women.

After the SC order, the returning officer Umesh Sharma stated that the election will be held on September 2 at the AIFF headquarter in Delhi and the results could be announced either on September 2 or 3.

The nominations for the posts can be filed between August 25 to 27 while the scrutiny will be done on August 28, the returning officer said.

The candidates will have a chance to withdraw the nomination on August 29 while the returning officer shall prepare the final list of contesting candidates and put it on the AIFF website on August 30.

The Supreme Court on Monday terminated the mandate of the CoA to manage the affairs of the AIFF and also postponed the election, earlier scheduled on August 28, by one week.

The top court had said it is modifying its previous orders to facilitate the revocation of the suspension which has been imposed on the AIFF by FIFA and the holding of the Under-17 Women’s World Cup 2022 in India.

A bench of Justices D.Y. Chandrachud and A.S. Bopanna said: “The day-to-day management of the AIFF shall be exclusively looked after by the AIFF administration led by the Acting Secretary General. The mandate of the Committee of Administrators appointed by the order of this court stands terminated.”

The top court, in its order, said: “Time for the completion of the elections which were scheduled to take place on August 28, 2022 shall stand extended by a period of one week. The Returning Officers shall, within the said period, refix the modalities for the filing of nominations from the stage which was reached on August 13, 2022 and ensure that the elections are completed on schedule.”

It said returning officers (ROs) — Umesh Sinha and Tapas Bhattacharya — shall be deemed to be the ROs appointed by it for the purpose of conducting the elections, noting that there was no objection to their continuance by any of the contesting parties before it.

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