AIFF approaches Jindal, Videocon to sponsor I-League

Praful-PatelNew Delhi, Nov 12 : All India Football Federation (AIFF) president Praful Patel has approached major industrial houses like Jindal Steel and Videocon to sponsor the I-League that has run into trouble.

In his attempt to draw big money sponsorship, Patel, union civil aviation minister, has appointed Sanjay Jindal, managing director of JSW Steel, as the chairman of the I-League committee and Venugopal Dhoot, chairman of Videocon Industries, as the deputy chairman.

A top AIFF official told IANS that the two appointments are the first step towards getting big sponsorship deals for the I-League.

"Talks are going on with both the industrial houses for quiet some time and this was not surprising. Jindal and Dhoot also are established businessman and they can also help the AIFF to market the league," the official said.

State-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) has decided not to sponsor the I-League from this season and after scrapping its marketing and telecast with Zee Sports, with still four years left, the federation is still struggling to get a broadcast partner for its flagship tournament that will start from Dec 3.

The AIFF is also trying to rope in Reliance Industries and International Management Group (IMG) as telecast and marketing partners.

The committee: Chairman: Sajjan Jindal Deputy chairman: Venugopal Dhoot State association representatives: Utpal Ganguli (Indian Football Association), Elvis Gomes (Goa Football Association), Wali Mohammed (Western India Football Association), Inder Singh (Punjab Football Association), N. K. Bhatia (Delhi Soccer Association), E. Krishna Narayana (Karnataka Soccer Association) and a representative from Kerala Football Association. Club representatives: P. Bhaskaran (Viva Kerala), Vijay Bali (JCT), R. Rajan Joseph (HAL), Cutsodio Almedia (Dempo), Nandan Piramal (Pune FC) and representative from East Bengal. AIFF representatives (from executive committee): Kushal Das (general secretary), Hardev Jadeja (treasurer) and Larsing Sawyan.(IANS)

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