AIFF may form a panel to resolve Derby debate - report

The Indian FA is mulling over the possibility of a one-man commission to pass a fair verdict on the Kolkata Derby conundrum.
Just after a day when the All India Football Federation (AIFF) received a restraining order to prevent them from taking any decisions on the issue of Mohun Bagan's snubbing of the second half in the Kolkata Derby, the governing body of football in India is reportedly considering the possibility of forming a one-man commission, headed by a former Supreme or a High Court judge, to furnish a verdict on the legality of Mohun Bagan's actions.

The AIFF indefinitely deferred the Mariners' I-League match against Pailan Arrows on December 15 to be played at the Salt Lake Stadium till they reach a decision. The Green and Maroon are reportedly compliant with the federation's decision.

"Constituting a commission is approved by the AIFF constitution, so there is nothing wrong in it," said an official to The Telegraph. The commission, it is believed, would be appointed by the federation president Praful Patel. Most of the Executive Committee members have already given their approval in writing, authorizing the president to appoint a man of his choice.

While the AIFF are trying to ensure a fair trial is handed out to Mohun Bagan, other I-League teams did not share the federation's view on the same.

"I-League teams are like George Orwell’s famous book, Animal Farm, where all animals were equal but some animals were more equal than others," said Churchill Brothers coach Subhash Bhowmick. "Mohun Bagan are more equal than others to the federation. The federation claimed the law and order situation was ideal at the Salt Lake Stadium on Sunday, something I don’t agree with. But then, why not impose the regulation 22 C (of the I-League regulations) straightaway," he added.

Mohun Bagan refused to take the field in the second half of the Kolkata Derby

The former East Bengal and Mohun Bagan coach also questioned the AIFF's delay in meting a punishment out to the Mariners when they did not hesitate in issuing a show-cause notice to Armando Colaco for allegedly entering the field of play during Dempo's match against East Bengal at Kolkata.

This alongwith the two-match ban slapped on Dempo midfielder Climax Lawrence were decisions that were taken quickly, according to Bhowmick and he went on to say that other I-League teams would seek to bend the rules if Bagan are let off easily.

Dempo coach and general secretary Armando Colaco too had his views on the topic. The 59-year old Goan, who has had his fair share of encounters with the AIFF, said that the federation had two sets of rules for clubs.

"According to one set of rules, AIFF slapped show cause on people like me without even giving me a hearing. They said it was all as per regulations. In Mohun Bagan’s case, they start consulting former High Court judges," commented Colaco.

The former India national team coach however agreed with Mohun Bagan's decision to withdraw from playing the second half due to the law and order issue.

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