Former senior vice-president Subrata Datta has sent a letter to the Returning Officer, contesting the rejection of his nomination as West Bengal state unit’s representative in the upcoming All India Football Federation’s election. Among state association representatives, veteran administrators Dutta — from Indian Football Association (West Bengal) and Larsing Ming’s (Meghalaya) nominations have been rejected by the poll’s returning officer, Umesh Sinha.
However in case, Dutta, who is also the chairman of IFA, is not allowed to take part in voting process, then association president Ajit Banerjee, who is incidentally Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s elder brother, will represent the unit at the polls.
As per Returning Officer’s contention, the duo have been in the AIFF executive committee (Ex-Co) for three terms, making them ineligible to contest for any post for the next four years, as per a clause in the National Sports Code.
Dutta has been the AIFF’s senior vice-president during ousted president Praful Patel’s reign.
However, the new draft constitution framed by the CoA, doesn’t consider vice-president as an office-bearer or executive functionary.
Dutta’s letter, which is in possession of PTI, states: “With utmost respect and humility, I would emphatically state that such purported contention is fallacious, incorrect and contrary to the mandated provisions, as enumerated hereafter.
“….and that I am neither ineligible to vote nor to contest the ensuing election and the provisions that have been mechanically applied without legal constructive consideration, are inapplicable as far as I am concerned having held the position of “Vice President” in the AIFF.” Dutta then quoted the draft constitution to state his contention.
“Article 26.3 clearly applies only to ‘Office-Bearers’ as defined in the Draft Constitution. In the Draft Constitution there is no whisper of any “Vice-President” as an office-bearer or otherwise. Thus, the purported disqualification as alleged in your Mail arising out of or related to Article 26 of the draft AIFF Constitution has no application at all.
Dutta also stated, “According to all relevant documents – the Draft Constitution, the National Sports Code, and the AIFF Constitution 2017, the position of any ‘Vice-President’ is not considered an “Office-Bearer”. Therefore, there is absolutely no basis to disqualify me from standing.”
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