Uncertainty looms over India's chances of hosting Under-17 World Cup

FIFA has rejected a letter by the Indian government, which was forwarded to them by the AIFF and asked for a fresh set of guarantees, in-order for India to host the tournament...

India’s chances of hosting the 2017 FIFA Under-17 World Cup took a turn for the worse, as FIFA rejected a letter by the Indian government, which was forwarded to the world’s governing body of football by the All India Football Federation (AIFF).

While the AIFF has not yet been given a conclusive answer regarding their chances of organizing the prestigious tournament, FIFA has maintained that they would only get the chance to host the competition if the Indian government gives the guarantees that it is asking for.

"The government's letter has been rejected by FIFA, they are asking for some guarantees from the government. We have then written to the government and they rejected it initially but we convinced them and sent the letter again, requesting them to go through it once again," said AIFF general secretary Kushal Das.

"FIFA is asking for guarantees like securities, tax, broadcasting, etc. We will get to know by March," Das added.

When contacted, the Sports Ministry said that FIFA wants some specific formats to be followed.

"There are some 17-18 items that FIFA wants to be included. So we have got in touch with about 8-9 ministries and they, in turn, have compiled everything and sent it to AIFF. But we are yet to get a response from the AIFF," Sports Secretary P K Deb told PTI.

FIFA's next executive committee meeting is scheduled to be held in March in Zurich. In its last executive committee in Tokyo last November, FIFA did not discuss India's bid for the tournament.

FIFA's general secretary Jerome Valcke, during his visit to India last year, had warned that the country will not get the prestigious event if it fails to meet the strict criteria.

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