Praful Patel steps down as AIFF president

The All India Football Federation (AIFF) president, Praful Patel stepped down from his post on Wednesday following the appointment of a three-member Committee of Administrators (CoA) by the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday removed Praful Patel and his committee from managing the national body and have appointed a three- member Committee of Administrators (CoA) headed by former top court judge AR Dave to manage the organisation’s affairs.

Patel who has been the president of the AIFF since 2009 and has already completed three terms or 12 years, which is the maximum for a national body, took the opportunity to thank the Supreme Court for “bringing finality to a long pending issue since 2017”.

“During my tenure I have had the honour of serving Indian Football. I would like to thank all stakeholders of the football family including our players — both men and women, our State Associations, the clubs, AIFF officials, the media, the Union and State Governments, marketing partners and sponsors, and all the lovers of our beautiful game,” he said in a statement.

“I am very happy that we have been able to professionalise Indian football and that we have a very strong grassroots programme which in the coming years will catapult us to the next level, and find its true place and recognition in the global map.

“India has also had the honour and privilege to host the first-ever FIFA World Cup in India which was a resounding success. It brought international recognition and appreciation for the growth and popularity of football in India. I have also had the proud honour of being the Senior Vice president of the Asian Football Confederation, as well as being the first Indian representative to be duly elected to the FIFA Council with the highest number of votes,” Patel added.