Praful Patel, on Saturday, achieved a feat that most of us thought was a distant dream only a few years ago. The All India Football Federation (AIFF) president got elected as a council member for FIFA. He not only became the first Indian to enter the prestigious council of members but also landed a one-sided victory in terms of votes.
Praful got a massive 38 out of the 46 votes for the position.
The election was held during the 29th Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Congress in Kaula Lumpur, Malaysia on Saturday. Praful was one of the eight candidates that were fighting for the spot of the council member for FIFA.
Praful Patel said, “I am extremely humbled. I express my gratitude to all the members of the AFC who felt me suitable for the post. The responsibility as a FIFA Council member is huge. I would not only be representing my own country but the entire continent. Thank you all for your confidence for rapid progress of football in Asia.”
The AIFF secretary, Kushal Das, and senior vice-president Subrata Datta were also present with the AIFF chief at the event. “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 said.
This is not the only success that has been achieved by the president of AIFF, he has also received AFC’s President Recognition award for grassroots at the AFC Annual Awards in 2014 in Manila as well as the AFC Best Developing Member Association in 2016.
This is an amazing feat for Indian football and the President, Praful Patel, himself. This is the way to go for Indian Football.