The women’s team of Gokulam Kerala FC is “stranded” in Tashkent after FIFA’s suspension of the All India Football Federation (AIFF) meant they were barred from playing in the AFC Women’s Club Championship, the team said on Twitter. The club appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and sports minister Anurag Thakur for “urgent intervention”. “23 women team players of Gokulam Kerala FC are stranded at Tashkent now of no fault of ours. We request urgent intervention by @PMOIndia @ianuragthakur @Anurag_Office @narendramodi for us to participate in the AFC,” Gokulam Kerala FC tweeted, along with a lengthy statement addressed to the PM Modi.
23 women team players of Gokulam Kerala FC are stranded at Tashkent now of no fault of ours. We request urgent intervention by @PMOIndia @ianuragthakur @Anurag_Office @narendramodi for us to participate in the AFC. pic.twitter.com/ltiM81XE5q
— Gokulam Kerala FC (@GokulamKeralaFC) August 17, 2022
“Our team reached Tashkent, Uzbekistan, from Kozhikode during the early hours of 16th of August 2022. On arrival, we heard through various media outlets that FIFA has banned AIFF (All India Football Federation) and the clubs are therefore no longer entitled to take part in the international competition until the suspension is lifted,” the club wrote in its statement.
“In the light of the above, we request PMOs good officers to intervene in this matter and make all efforts to revoke FIFA ban and include us back in the AFC Women’s Club Championship as the champion club of India,” the statement read.
“Our Prime Minister’s dream is to make India a Super Power and become number 1 in the world. In a small way, our club is spearheading the efforts to bring women’s football in India by being the champion club of Indian since 2019. Such an unforeseen ban should not be detrimental to our efforts in making INDIA proud to become the number one women’s football nation in Asia,” the club wrote.
FIFA, the apex football body, on Tuesday announced that it has decided to suspend the All India Football Federation (AIFF) with immediate effect and the decision was taken unanimously by the Bureau of the FIFA Council.
“The Bureau of the FIFA Council has unanimously decided to suspend the All India Football Federation (AIFF) with immediate effect due to undue influence from third parties, which constitutes a serious violation of the FIFA Statutes,” stated an official media release, issued by FIFA.
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