The I-League was on Monday suspended for at least six weeks by the All India Football Federation after a Covid-19 outbreak hit the participating teams inside the bio-bubble in Kolkata.
It has been learnt that the total number of Covid-19 cases now stands at 45 after the latest round of tests which prompted the AIFF to suspend the league for six weeks.
The League Committee, abiding consensus of all participating clubs as per the suggestion of Dr Harsh Mahajan (member of AIFF Sports Medical Committee) ratified the decision to postpone the ongoing I-League 2021-22 for at least 6 weeks,” the AIFF said in a release.
The I-League Committee, chaired by senior AIFF vice-president Subrata Dutta, will have a review meeting after four weeks to take stock of the situation and decide the future course of action.
The health protocols of the bio-bubble will continue till January 7, as all teams will be tested again on Wednesday. The teams can travel back to their respective destinations once they are tested negative.
Players and officials, who have tested positive in the team hotels and have already been isolated, will be treated and quarantined in Kolkata as per the health parameters laid down. They will be allowed to leave the bio-bubble after they test negative.
Mr. Lalnghinglova Hmar, Mr. Chirag Tanna, Mr. Rochak Langer attended
the meeting, while leave of absence was granted to Mr. Souter Vaz, Mr.
Anil Kumar, and Mr. BK Roka. Besides, AIFF General Secretary Mr. Kushal
Das, League CEO Mr. Sunando Dhar, COO Ms. Swati Kothari, Mr. Gursimran
Brar, Director of Legal Affairs and International Relations, and members
from the League department attended the meeting.
Earlier in the day, the League had gathered for an official meeting
with representatives all the participating clubs of the Hero I-League
2021-22 (also via video conferencing), wherein the AIFF put forward to
the clubs the suggestion of Dr. Harsh Mahajan, a Padma Shri, and a
member of the AIFF Sports Medical Committee.
Dr. Mahajan informed the clubs that with the number of positive cases
rising all over the country exponentially, the new covid norms and
restrictions being implemented by the Government of West Bengal, and
with the philosophy of AIFF not allowing any compromise with the health
and safety of the players and officials, it’s prudent that the Hero
I-League 2021-22 be postponed by at least 6 weeks, a fact which was
corroborated by all the participating clubs in the meeting.
The clubs also unanimously appreciated the efforts taken by the AIFF
to give paramount importance to the health of the players and officials.
Thereafter, the League Committee, abiding by consensus of all the
participating clubs as per the suggestion of Dr. Mahajan, ratified the
decision to postpone the ongoing Hero I-League 2021-22 for at least 6
weeks. The League will have a review meeting after 4 weeks to take stock
of the situation.
“The omicron variant spreads very fast but also comes down very
rapidly. We also need to take account and consider the government
regulations and policies,” Dr. Mahajan averred.
The protocol of the bio bubble will continue till January 7, as all
teams will be tested again on January 5, and teams can travel back to
their respective destinations once they are tested negative. Players and
officials who have tested positive in the team hotels who have already
been isolated will be treated, and quarantined in Kolkata as per the
health parameters laid down and will be allowed to leave the bubble
after they test negative.