Footballer Nirmal Chettri to head ad hoc FPAS committee

GANGTOK, 13 Jul:

An adhoc committee of the recently formed Football Players Association of Sikkim [FPAS] has been constituted during a meeting here at Tathangchen on Thursday. The meeting was attended by around 150 footballers of Sikkim including U-14 players, women and active footballers.

It may be mentioned that FPAS was officially formed on 08 July by and for footballers of Sikkim.

The adhoc committee is led by Nirmal Chettri as the president. The committee has Sanju Pradhan as vice-president [South Sikkim], Bikash Jairu as vice-president [West], Mayal Dok Lepcha as vice-president [North], Sonam Gyaltsen Tenzing as vice-president [East] and Anuradha Chettri as vice-president [women’s football].

The committee also has Nim Tshering Lepcha as general secretary and Tenzing Wangchuk and Ugen Gyatso as treasurers. Likewise, Robin Gurung, Kunzang Lachungpa, Sahinsha Ansari, Ashish Chettri, Mobin Rai, Pawan Chettri, Chunku Bhutia, Sunny Rai, Sagar Rai, Pema Norden Lachungpa, Anup Subba and Jigme Singye have been appointed as executive members. The club has also appointed Nim Tshering Lepcha, MD Lepcha and Sonam Gyaltsen Tenzing as coordinators.

The club has appointed an former Indian international footballer, HT Basi popularly known as Jerry Basi as the FPAS advisor.

Addressing a press conference here today, FPAS president, Nirmal Chettri said that the association was the need of the hour for footballers of Sikkim. He mentioned that the FPAS has been formed for and by footballers of Sikkim.

“The association will start its membership drive soon to register all footballers of the State and will immediately start the process for affiliation with the Football Players Association of India [FPAI],” he informed.

A delegation of FPAS is also scheduled to meet the Secretary of the Sports & Youth Affairs Department and officials of Sikkim Football Association within a week to inform them about the aims and objectives of FPAS and to discuss various issues regarding the development of football and welfare of footballers in the State. FPAS is also scheduled to meet the owners and management of different football clubs of the State.

Another Indian international, Sanju Pradhan, who is FPAS vice-president for South District, stated that FPAS hopes to work for the safeguard and welfare of footballers registered with the FPAS.

“The Association will take all issues of local footballers to the concerned authorities for their welfare and benefit,” he said. The association will also work towards bringing professionalism in Sikkim football and work in the interest of local footballers, he added.

Mr Pradhan stressed upon the need for insurance and a proper season contract for local footballers. He stated that professionalism in football will create more employment opportunities for local footballers.

Responding to media queries, Mr Chettri mentioned that FPAS will submit inputs to SFA for improving the State Leagues, women’s football league, age group football tournaments and other proposals for the development of football.

He added that FPAS will also work to arrange friendly exposure matches for a team of around 25 local players with different clubs outside the State from time to time.

“Exposure of local players outside the State would help players to get spotted by different clubs in these friendly matches which could further help them in their football career,” he said.

Mr Pradhan stated that another focus of the FPAS will be football development at the grassroot level. The association will organise coaching and exposure activities for young players at the grassroot level in every corner of the State.

Likewise, national player and FPAS vice-president, MD Lepcha stated that a well organised league in the State is needed for the betterment of football and footballers in the State.

Sikkim has lots of talented footballers and well-organised State league for at least six months every year will help to bring professionalism in Sikkim football and a better State team for national championships, he added.