New Delhi, Sep 2 (SocialNews.XYZ) After getting defeated comprehensively in the All India Football Federation (AIFF) polls, the president of Rajasthan Football Association, Manvendra Singh on Friday rued lack of support from other states, saying that the state associations have either succumbed to the political pressure or financial accounting.
Former India goalkeeper Kalyan Chaubey has defeated Bhaichung Bhutia 33-1 in a one-sided election for the post of president, while N. A Haris defeated Manvendra Singh 29-5 to become the vice president of the country's football body. Kipa Ajay will be the new AIFF treasurer after he defeated Gopalakrishna Kosaraju 32-1, with one vote declared invalid.
"There are only two reasons why somebody will change their position. You know, there's pressure because of political reasons. Or there's pressure because of financial accounting. Think of any reason why somebody would change the position the way they change the position," Manvendra told IANS.
Asked to comment on the results of the AIFF polls, he said, "This is a sad day for football in India. If a footballing icon like Bhaichung is getting defeated like this, you can understand where we are heading. And this kind of judgment is the reflection of why football is where it is. The same administrators had given a commitment that they would not allow any outside experience to come into football."
"And obviously, you know, that commitment did not last more than a week because they changed their position pretty dramatically and pretty drastically 180 degrees and the judgment is driven by interest other than football. And the fact that you know, last night a minister of the union government came into a hotel where state associations representatives were staying. He was with them for a couple of hours. A union minister was exhorting them to not vote for Bhaichung and they succumbed to that exhortation. It's a shame; obviously, interests are other than football. It's a sad day for football and it can only get darker," he told IANS.
Manvendra said that public sentiment is overwhelmingly in favour of Bhaichung but he is still in shock at how the situation changed overnight.
"It is deeply disappointing. It's a shame. It's a shame on India and Indian football. Public sentiment is overwhelmingly in favour of Bhaichung and you know, this is reflected in the way people are pushing him along. But this is a bit of a poor reflection on football administration as a whole," he said.