Soccer

Supreme Court asserts that it will ensure India hosts Under-17 Women’s World Cup


Allows a Sports Ministry request for a chance to calm the troubled waters within the AIFF

Allows a Sports Ministry request for a chance to calm the troubled waters within the AIFF

The Supreme Court on Thursday allowed a request made by the Sports Ministry for an opportunity to calm the troubled waters within the All India Football Federation (AIFF) by meeting with its Committee of Administrators and FIFA.

But the Bench led by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud made it a point to remind that it wants India to host the Under-17 Women’s World Cup in October 2022 and the court would assert every authority under its command to make it happen.

The sharp remarks from the Bench came while hearing a contempt petition filed by the Committee of Administrators (CoA), who complained that AIFF’s former president, Praful Patel, and some States’ football associations were moving indirectly to thwart the Supreme Court’s interim order on August 3 to conduct elections to the federation and finalise the AIFF’s Constitution in time for the World Cup.

“You want to sort it out among yourselves, we have no difficulty because we want the World Cup to be held here… and should it come to it we will assert our authority without any exception,” Justice Chandrachud addressed the lawyers for AIFF, State associations, the Ministry and other parties in the case.

The hearing began with Additional Solicitor General Balbir Singh, for the Ministry, informing the court that a meeting was held on Wednesday with the FIFA officials. Mr. Singh said a further meeting was scheduled among FIFA, the CoA and the Ministry.

“All the counsel appearing for every contesting party without exception said it will be desirable if the matter is sorted out amicably,” Justice Chandrachud observed. The court listed the case for hearing next Wednesday.

On August 3, the Supreme Court had passed an interim order to the AIFF to hold and conclude elections to its executive committee as expeditiously as possible. The court had agreed to a 27-day time election schedule prepared by the CoA. According to this schedule the results of the election would be declared on August 28/29, 2022.

The court ordered that the election should be conducted in a manner consistent with the provisions of Article 26 of the draft Constitution prepared by the CoA which prescribes the limits and conditions of eligibility for candidates.

The court had also agreed with the CoA’s proposal that 36 eminent players who represent prominent football players’ community should be part of the electoral college with right to vote in the AIFF polls.



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