FIFA bans AIFF
Why in news?
The apex body of the sport, FIFA, suspended the country’s top administrative organisation, the All India Football Federation, for “undue influence from third parties”.
- The Bureau of the FIFA council, which passed the judgment, also took away the country’s rights to hold the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022, which was scheduled to be held from October 11-30
What is the ban, and how will it work?
- As of now, the AIFF has been suspended by FIFA due to “third-party interference”. Third-party interference refers to a situation in which a member association of FIFA fails to remain independent, is co-opted, and no longer has control over its organisation. In this case, the SC’s diktat to the COA to run the AIFF was a textbook case of third-party interference, according to FIFA statutes.
- The suspension means, firstly, no international football — and this applies to all national teams, across all age groups. It also applies to both men’s and women’s football, and to all club teams in India
- The suspension also impacts international transfers, as well as any courses or developmental programs that AIFF officials could, or were taking part in. This in effect means a total ban on all football-related activities outside India. However, the league in the country, as well as domestic transfers, can continue.
What will be the immediate impact of the ban?
- The Gokulam Kerala’s Women’s team, which is currently travelling to Qarshi, Uzbekistan for the AFC Women’s Club Championship, may no longer be able to participate in the tournament. ATK Mohun Bagan, which was set to be part of the AFC Cup, may not be able to play in Asia’s second-tier club competition. Whether India makes the draw for the AFC Asian Cup is up in the air. The junior national team’s participation in the AFC Cup trials is in limbo as well.
- But most importantly, FIFA has announced that the U-17 Women’s World Cup would no longer take place in India. Only days ago, the central government had announced the tournament, and tickets had gone on sale. The damage can be undone if the ban is lifted fast enough. But as of now, all rests on how matters proceed, and which side backs off.
- FIFA is an international governing body of association football, beach football and futsal.
- It was founded in 1904 to oversee international competition among the national associations of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
- Headquartered in Zürich, Switzerland, its membership now comprises 211 national associations; Russia was suspended in 2022.
- These national associations must each also be members of one of the six regional confederations into which the world is divided: Africa, Asia, Europe, North & Central America and the Caribbean, Oceania and South America.
- It outlines a number of objectives in the organizational Statutes, including growing association football internationally, providing efforts to ensure it is accessible to everyone, and advocating for integrity and fair play.
- It is responsible for the organization and promotion of association football’s major international tournaments, notably the World Cup which commenced in 1930 and the Women’s World Cup which commenced in 1991.
- Although FIFA does not solely set the laws of the game, that being the responsibility of the International Football Association Board of which FIFA is a member, it applies and enforces the rules across all FIFA competitions
- The All India Football Federation (AIFF) was the governing body of football in India under jurisdiction of Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India. Formed in 1935 founded at Darbhanga, the federation was one of the founding members of the Asian Football Confederation, the overseer of football in Asia.
- The AIFF sanctions and runs all competitive football tournaments and leagues at a national level, namely the Indian Super League, I-League and Super Cup. The federation also indirectly manages local football competitions through the state associations. The federation is also responsible for managing the India national football team, as well as the women’s team and the various youth national sides.
The AIFF is also part of the South Asian Football Federation, the organization that runs football in South Asia. The federation is currently based in Dwarka, Delhi.