Former AIFF Management Siphoned off Substantial Funds, Reveals CoA Forensic Audit

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The previous AIFF administration led by the now ousted Praful Patel had apparently siphoned off huge amounts of money during their tenure at the helm of the Indian football governing body.

Patel, who had held on to his position as the head of India’s football federation for two years over the permitted tenure had extracted massive sums of money from the body, a forensic audit of the record of the governing body for the sport in the nation revealed.

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The information came to light when the CoA’s counsel Gopal Shankaranarayan presented Justice D Y Chandrachund and AS Bopanna with his account after an audit which pointed toward the former administration.

Alarmed at the sorry state of affairs, the top courts in the country found no other option but to hand over the reins of the federation to a committee of administrators in an attempt to save the body from plummeting further.

The Patel-led unit was replaced by A R Dave, a former Supreme Court judge and S Y Quraishi, former chief election commissioner and Bhaskar Ganguly, former Indian football team captain.

But, this decision did not sit well with FIFA, which suspended the AIFF citing the interference of a third party.

FIFA also frowned upon the decision of the CoA to add former internationals to the voters list.

The world governing body had given a deadline of 23 August 2022 for the government to scrap the CoA. The Supreme Court of India eventually did dismantle the committee and ordered the election a week from the 28th of August in order to instil an elected body.

The suspension imposed on the nation by the Switzerland-based world football governing body would have had serious ramifications for the country which was scheduled to host the upcoming U-17 Women’s World Cup later this year.

Any delay in the action of the court might have been presumed as non-compliance with the established FIFA guidelines, which would have resulted in India foregoing the right to host the worldwide event.

The Supreme Court also issued guidelines to be followed to steer the federation in the right direction in order for the ban on AIFF to be lifted so that football-related activities in the nation can run smoothly without any hitches.

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