AIFF President Praful Patel Becomes first Indian to Be elected As FIFA Council Member
Praful Patel was one of the eight candidates vying for the spot in the election which was held during the 29th AFC (Asian Football Confederations) Congress.
AIFF vice-president Subrata Dutta said Praful Patel's victory was "landmark for Indian football". (Photo Credit: AIFF)
All India Football Federation president Praful Patel was Saturday elected as a FIFA Council member, becoming the first Indian to enter the prestigious council in a landmark development.
Patel got 38 out of 46 votes.
The AIFF chief was one of the eight candidates vying for the spot in the election which was held during the 29th AFC (Asian Football Confederations) Congress in the Malaysian capital.
Patel was accompanied by AIFF general secretary Kushal Das and senior vice-president Subrata Datta.
"Mr. Patel's victory is a "landmark for Indian football". Congratulations to Mr. Patel. He fully deserves this honour. His leadership has taken Indian football to greater heights. Asian football will immensely benefit from his presence as a FIFA Council member," Datta told PTI.
The AFC Electoral committee and the FIFA Review Committee conducted the eligibility review on all the candidates.
Honoured and humbled to be the first Indian to be elected as a member of the #FIFA Council. In this new role and as the #AIFF President, I shall work to the best of my abilities to strengthen the game of #football worldwide and among #Asian countries.@IndianFootball @FIFAcom— Praful Patel (@praful_patel) April 6, 2019
I express my gratitude to the members of @theafcdotcom who felt I was suitable for this post and therefore electing with the highest number of votes.@IndianFootball @FIFAcom @fifamedia #IndianFootball #AFCCongress2019— Praful Patel (@praful_patel) April 6, 2019
A Al- Mohannadi (Qatar), Khalid Awad A. Althebity (Saudi Arabia), Mariano V. Araneta, Jr. (Philippines), Chung Mong Gyu (Korea Republic), Du Zhaocai (China PR), Mehdi Taj (IR Iran) and Kohzo Tashima (Japan) were the others who contested for the five available spots in the council.
Earlier in the day, the congress re-elected Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa by acclamation as AFC president for a second four-year term until 2023.
Shaikh Salman, whose presidency began in May 2013, was the only candidate for the position.
There were initially three candidates confirmed by the AFC Electoral Committee following the completion of the eligibility checks on March 1. The number was reduced following the withdrawals of Mohamed Khalfan Matar Saeed Al-Romaithi (UAE) and Saoud A. Aziz M A Al-Mohannadi (Qatar) both of whom threw their full support behind Shaikh Salman.
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