The All India Football Federation (AIFF) is holding back on deciding a verdict for the three players involved in assaulting a minor.
The accused namely Jagpreet Singh of East Bengal, Jaspal Parmar, formerly of East Bengal and Salgaocar, and Prayag United's Baldeep Singh have played for the Indian national team at the senior level. Jaspal was part of the squad that was picked for the two friendlies against Malaysia last year, while Jagpreet took part in the SAFF Champsionship. Baldip was a squad member in the AFC Challenge Cup winning team of 2008.
|Jaspal has represented India at senior level along with Jagpreet and Baldeep|
Prayag United wasted no time in suspending Baldeep till he is proved innocent. But their city rivals East Bengal have backed Jagpreet stubbornly claiming that during the time the crime occurred, the player was with his teammates at the Salt Lake Stadium preparing for their I-League game against Pune FC.
"The news is quite shocking. If the players are proven guilty, we will certainly refer the matter to the federations disciplinary committee and they will decide what action has to be taken against them," said AIFF secretary Kushal Das to The Times of India.
The federation's vice-president Subrata Dutta added his opinions to those of Das: "The accused have played for India in the recent past, so the federation must act if the crime is proved as they bring disrepute to the game,"Dutta was quoted saying.
Mohun Bagan's finance secretary Debashish Datta told The Times of India that he had asked Raj Gomes, secretary of the newly formed Indian Professional Football Clubs Association (IPFCA) to propose in their next meeting that clubs under the umbrella of the association should not recruit the accused players.
East Bengal's Debabrata Sarkar reasoned that clubs cannot keep a check on players' personal lives and the players have to choose how to lead their lives off the field.
How do you stay up with football when on the move? With http://m.goal.com –your best source for mobile coverage of the beautiful game.