The All India Football Federation (AIFF) finds itself embroiled in a major shakeup as Secretary General Shaji Prabhakaran has been unceremoniously removed from his position. This abrupt decision has sent ripples of controversy throughout the Indian football community, leading to allegations of conspiracy and raising concerns over the organization’s governance.
The decision to remove Shaji Prabhakaran was reportedly sanctioned by AIFF President Kalyan Chaubey and is set to be approved by the AIFF’s executive committee today. However, this move has not been without its fair share of dissent and controversy.
Shaji Prabhakaran in his letter ✍️ : “I must say that there must be some conspiracy behind this decision, which I am not able to understand. I must say, this is a totally irresponsible decision at a time when AIFF governance matter is still under discussion and scrutiny across.”… pic.twitter.com/k7OgCrnwiG
— 90ndstoppage (@90ndstoppage) November 8, 2023
Shaji Prabhakaran, who had been serving as the Secretary General of the AIFF, has not taken his removal lightly. He has raised questions over the legitimacy of his termination, pointing to the AIFF Constitution, which mandates that only the Executive Committee holds the authority to dismiss or terminate the General Secretary. Prabhakaran strongly hinted at a possible conspiracy behind his abrupt removal and expressed his inability to comprehend the motives behind this decision.
In a letter addressed to the AIFF Executive Committee, Prabhakaran stated, “I must say that there must be some conspiracy behind this decision, which I am not able to understand. I must say, this is a totally irresponsible decision at a time when AIFF governance matter is still under discussion and scrutiny across.” He went on to emphasize his unwavering commitment to the sport, saying, “I have worked with 100% honesty, and I have not made any decision that was bad for football in India.”
The rift between Kalyan Chaubey and Shaji Prabhakaran had been simmering since June when reports emerged of the AIFF committee’s efforts to limit the powers and decision-making independence of the Secretary-General. Under Kalyan Chaubey’s leadership, a high-level core committee was established, with key figures such as NA Haris as Chairman, Avijit Paul as Deputy Chairman, and members Tetea Hmar, Mulrajsinh Chudasama, and Vijay Bali.
It is speculated that Deputy Secretary General Satyanarayan M, appointed by the core committee, is the probable successor to Shaji Prabhakaran. This move further underscores the power dynamics at play within the AIFF.
The sudden and controversial removal of Shaji Prabhakaran has sent shockwaves through the Indian football community, leaving many to ponder the implications of this decision on the governance and direction of football in the country. The allegations of conspiracy and questions regarding the transparency of the process cast a shadow over the AIFF’s decision-making.
As the AIFF’s executive committee deliberates this significant change, Indian football fans and stakeholders will be closely watching to see how the situation unfolds and what it means for the future of the sport in the country. The spotlight is now on the governing body to provide clarity and transparency in its decision-making processes, as the controversy surrounding Shaji Prabhakaran’s removal continues to capture attention.