The scope of the ongoing audit of accounts of the All India Football Federation (AIFF) by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India for alleged financial irregularities has been expanded to cover the period from 2008-09 to 2020-21, which coincides with the tenure of the ousted president Praful Patel.
Last month, the CAG constituted a team to conduct an audit of the AIFF’s accounts for the last four financial years with an instruction from higher authorities to “go deep into the details".
But in what could spell more trouble for the AIFF, the period of the audit has been extended, according to a memo issued to the football body by the office of the Director-General of Audit.
Patel took over as full-time AIFF president in October 2009 before being re-elected to the top post in December 2012 and 2016. He was thrown out of office by the Supreme Court on May 18 after exceeding his tenure as AIFF president.
“It is intimated that with approval of our HQ’s office, the audit programme has been revised from 17.05.2022 to 20.06.2022 for the audit of the financial year 2008-09 to 2020-21 in continuation of the previous audit as already intimated dated 17.05.2022," an audit memo issued to the AIFF by the office of Director General of Audit read.
“In this regard, it is requested necessary instructions may also please be issued to all the concerned officers/officials to furnish all the requisitioned information/record of mentioned time period promptly."
The Director-General of Audit conducts audits in conformity with Auditing Standards issued by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.
A team of officials from the CAG had last month visited the AIFF headquarters to look into its various documents related to the last four financial years.
Patel’s third term in office was to end in December 2020 but he clung to an SC case, which remained pending since 2017, to extend his executive committee’s term while refusing to hold elections till the issue of a new constitution was settled by the top court.
This forced the SC to appoint a three-member Committee of Administrators (CoA) headed by former top court judge AR Dave to manage the affairs of the AIFF and adoption of its constitution in line with the National Sports Code and model guidelines.
Patel, a former union minister, served as acting president for one year after long-time head Priyaranjan Dasmunshi became ill in 2008. He took over as full-time president in October 2009 before being re-elected to the top post in December 2012 and 2016.
Earlier, while reacting to a report that the Sports Ministry has approved an audit of the AIFF’s accounts after the special cell of the CAG allegedly found financial irregularities, the federation had said it has been submitting a copy of its audited financial statements to the CAG.
“The AIFF has been submitting a copy of its audited financial statements to the CAG. In fact, audited accounts from 2017-18 to 2020-21 have all been submitted to them," the AIFF had said in a statement.
“The AIFF did receive a letter on June 18, 2021, from CAG asking for audited finances along with a copy of documents of financial grants from MYAS and other sources for the period from 2017-18 to 2020-21.
“It was on August 30, 2021, that all relevant documents for the period from 2017-18 to 2019-20 were submitted, and subsequently, all audited financials for the period of 2020-21 were submitted on February 10, 2022," it added.