An FIR was lodged at Guwahati today against FIFA U 17 World Cup LOC tournament director Javier Ceppi, other organisers and officials of Assam government on allegation of conspiring to shift the semi final match between Brazil and England from Guwahati to Kolkata.
The FIR, filed by publicity secretary of Tai Ahom Yuba Parishad Dharma Kanta Gogoi at Basistha police station in the city, alleged that Ceppi and the officials and other organisers conspired to shift the match at the last minute in order to swindle massive funds generated through ticket sales and advertisements for the Guwahati semi final match.
The police complaint comes on the same day when Ceppi had expressed his gratitude to the government of Assam for rendering all support and cooperation to FIFA for hosting a part of the tournament in Guwahati.
Gogoi raised suspicion on how the ground condition at Kolkata was deemed fit for play when incessant rains had lashed both Guwahati and Kolkata during the same period.
Unfit playing conditions due to heavy downpour at Guwahati had led to shifting of the match to Kolkata, with Brazil taking on England at Kolkata today.
Gogoi pointed that the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium at Guwahati, which was the original venue, was handed over by Assam government to FIFA in May this year and it was the responsibility of the FIFA Local Organising Committee (LOC) to ensure its play-worthiness.
Demanding refund of ticket prices and adequate monetary compensation, Gogoi urged the police to register a criminal complaint against Ceppi, other organizers and the state government officials under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code.
Guwahati among the six host cities hosted eight matches, including one quarterfinal, during the FIFA U 17 World Cup 2017, with the semi final being the only match the city failed to host due to poor ground conditions caused by incessant heavy rains.