AIFF, sports ministry hope to satisfy FIFA queries

Indo Asian News Service

New Delhi, Feb 14 (IANS) All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel said Wednesday that he was in talks with the government and hoped to get assurances that would satisfy world body FIFA in granting the hosting rights of the 2017 U-17 World Cup to India.

"We are working on a resolution with the sports ministry. FIFA has asked for some more assurances from the government in the form of guarantees. Hopefully it will be solved," Patel told reporters here on the sidelines of a two-day seminar on football organised by FICCI.

Patel said that AIFF lawyers have been briefed by the FIFA at its headquarters in Zurich.

But the sports ministry is yet to hear from the AIFF the specific assurances demanded by FIFA.

Pradip Kumar Dep, secretary, sports, said that the government was keen to look into the assurances demanded by FIFA but it was difficult to give it in writing.

"The AIFF hasn't got back to us after they were briefed by FIFA. We are keen to offer the assurances but difficult for the government to give it in writing," he said.

Asked if the assurances are practically feasible, Deb said: "The assurances they want are there in the laws of the land. But it can only be given once they apply. During the Commonwealth Games also we gave tax concessions but again it was applied for. The government is keen on hosting the U-17 World Cup and we will try our best."

FIFA last month rejected the government's letter supporting India's bid for the U-17 World Cup and asked for specific assurances on security, tax and foreign exchange inflow.