Top priority will be to develop youth leagues and grassroots programmes, says Avijit Paul

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AIFF Development Committee Chairman and Executive Committee Member Mr. Avijit Paul has stressed the importance of developing the grassroots program and youth leagues in efforts to take Indian football to new heights in the future.

The Development Committee, during its meeting at Football House on Wednesday, November 2, 2022, recommended that the AIFF provide financial assistance to each state association in the amount of Rs 24 lakhs each per annum, so that they improve the game in their respective fields. states.

“Our top priority will be to develop youth leagues and grassroots programs in the states that will help Indian football reach greater heights. Without proper youth programs, no further progress can be made in the structure,” Mr. Avijit Paul said after the Development Committee meeting.

“I would like to thank our AIFF President, Mr. Kalyan Chaubey, for giving importance to all State Associations and emphasizing the development of the sport through their support. We all know that if the states are not developed, Indian football cannot advance.

“The way FIFA and the AFC support the national federations, all the member associations wanted the same to happen in our system, and through Mr Chaubey’s vision, we are trying to achieve our goals,” said he added.

Also co-secretary of the Football Association of Odisha (FAO), Mr Paul expressed his plans for the future and said, “The annual financial support of Rs 24 lakhs, which has been discussed to provide each state association under the banner of the AIFF will be used by the state associations for their women’s and men’s leagues, youth leagues, offices, equipment and grassroots development.

“To make a good structure work, the essential thing is to have human resources. We have planned to have a technical coordinator in each state who will coordinate day-to-day activities with the technical director of AIFF and execute the important work,” said Avijit Paul.

A three-member committee has been formed consisting of the vice-chairman of the development committee, Mr. Mulrajsinh Chudasama, and members, Mr. Vijay Bali and Mr. Ratankumar Singh Moirangthem, who will present a policy on how the funds will be distributed and used by the States.

“We are also about to design the states’ needs in terms of office space and infrastructure. This is a new thing happening for the first time in the federation and I believe that through these developmental activities, Indian football can develop in a better direction,” Mr. Paul said.

“This is a historic step that has been taken by the AIFF and I would like to thank everyone who participated. I would also like to urge all members of state associations to put their one hundred percent and provide assistance to the federation wherever needed,” he said.

A “sister states program” was also suggested by the Committee, in which successful states would provide support to more than one state in the areas of governance, development, leagues, grassroots, etc. “States that are technically strong can help other states across the country, which can bring a lot of expertise to popularize the game.

“I would like to thank FIFA for bringing the FIFA+ streaming platform to India, which we must use to popularize football in the country. It will be a huge motivational boost for young children to watch and experience matches. high-level football in various parts of the country,” Mr. Paul concluded.

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