Praful Patel

Praful Patel
Constituency: Maharashtra

Date of Birthday: 17 February 1957
Place of Birth: Kolkata, West Bengal, India
Political party: Nationalist Congress Party
Educational Qualification: B.Com. Educated at Bombay University, Mumbai, Maharashtra
Profession: Industrialist, Sports administrator, Political and Social Worker

Marital Status: Married on 10 February 1977
Spouse's Name: Shrimati Varsha Patel
Children: Avni, Niyati, Poorna and Prajay
Parents: Late Shri Manoharbhai Patel, Late Shrimati Shantaben Patel
Permanent Address: Bagicha Ramnagar, Gondia Distt., Maharashtra 441614 Tel.- {07182} 222127, 222115
Official Website :

Praful Manoharbhai Patel (born 17 February 1957) is an Indian politician. His father, Manoharbhai Patel, an Indian National Congress leader who was elected to represent Gondia Bhandara districts in Maharashtra. His political career began in 1991 and he was appointed as the Union Minister of Civil Aviation (Independent Charge) in 2004. His family runs the CEEJAY group, a large tobacco conglomerate in India.

He was the president of India's association football governing body the All India Football Federation (AIFF) from 2009 till 2022 when the Committee of Administrators (CoA) took over the interim administration following the appointment by the Supreme Court. He became the Asian Football Confederation's vice president of the SAFF region at the AFC Congress held in Bahrain in 2015. In December 2016 he was appointed as the Senior Vice President of the Asian Football Confederation. In 2017, He became a member of a FIFA Finance Committee for a term of four years.

Early life and education

Praful Patel attended Mumbai's Campion School, and then Sydenham College. His father, a member of the Maharashtra Assembly who represented Gondia constituency, died when he was 13.

He is graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Bombay and married Varsha Patel, a Gujarati businessman's daughter.

Political career

Patel followed in his father's footsteps in choosing a political career. In 1985, he became the president of the Municipal Council, Gondia, (Maharashtra) and in 1991 was elected to the 10th Lok Sabha. In 1996 and 1998 he was re-elected to the 11th Lok Sabha and 12th Lok Sabha respectively. Patel was a member of a number of committees within the Indian Government including, the Consultative Committee, Ministry of Environment and Forests (1991–1996), the Committee on Science and Technology (1994–1995), the Committee on Home Affairs (1995–1996), the Committee on Finance (1996–97), and the Consultative Committee of the Ministry of Civil Aviation before being elected to the Rajya Sabha in 2000.

In 2004, Patels became the Minister of State for Civil Aviation. He was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha for his second term in 2006 and in 2009 he was re-elected to the 15th Lok Sabha for a fourth term. On 19 January 2011, Patel became the Cabinet Minister for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises and relieved of Civil Aviation Portfolio. He was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha from Maharashtra in 2016.


From 2004 to 2011, Patel was appointed Minister of Civil Aviation. In this role, the government increased the foreign direct investment cap in the domestic airlines sector from 40% to 49%. He also stressed the importance of the aviation sector's cargo carriers and their importance to the Indian economy. In January 2011, he completed his tenure as Civil Aviation Minister and was appointed as the Union Cabinet Minister of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprise.

On 9 January 2013, Patel launched the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan (NEMMP) 2020, which is a roadmap for the progressive introduction and expansion of efficient and environmentally friendly electric and hybrid vehicles in the country.

As the Minister of the Heavy Industries, Patel launched a project to build the world's largest solar power plant near Sambhar Lake in Rajasthan. The project will generate roughly 4000 MW of power, but following protest from environmental groups, the project site was moved to Kharaghoda in Surendranagar district of Gujarat.

Patel placed a bid from India to host the FIFA World Club Championships.

Under Patel, the AIFF introduced the Indian Super League run by the Football Sports Development Pvt Ltd., which aims to make Indian football more competitive at an international level. In April 2014, Patel announced of the eight franchise owners in the Indian Super League.

AIFF President

After a month of signing an agreement with the German Football Association (DFB), the AIFF President inked a tie up with the French Football Federation (FFF) in the city of Munich. Previously, an agreement with the Japan Football Association (JFA) was also signed by the Federation in February 2015. As per the correspondence which has been signed, the two federations have taken the decision to support each other in terms of the mutual growth, promotion and continuous emphasis on the development of football in both the countries.

Under the presidency of Praful Patel, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) brought back international friendlies to India by awarding Mumbai with its first official international match after 61 years. Praful has said that India will host more friendly matches in the future.

On 28 March 2016, Patel announced the commencement of a women's league later in 2016. In a Special General Body Meeting of the AIFF held in New Delhi, a women's league was introduced in line with Patel's plans to place more emphasis on women's football. On 17 October 2016, the women's football league trial kicked off for the first time in India in the city of Cuttack. On 24 January 2017 AIFF President Praful Patel launched the inaugural edition of the Indian Women's League at New Delhi. The league will commence from 28 January with six teams participating in it.

On 1 December 2016, Patel was appointed as the Senior Vice President of the Asian Football Confederation. India subsequently won the rights to host the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017 and hosted the AFC U-16 Championship in September 2016. The All India Football Federation has also won the AFC Developing Member Association of the Year Award at the AFC's Annual Awards 2016 held in the city of Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

On 21 January 2016, Praful Patel was elected unopposed as the AIFF President for the consecutive terms.

Memberships and Chairman positions

Patel is Chairman of the Manoharbhai Patel Charitable Trust and President of the Gondia Education Society, Gondia, Maharashtra, Associated Sports and Clubs include the Gondwana Club, Nagpur Lions International Club, former President of the All India Football Federation, Cricket Club Mumbai and Mumbai Cricket Association, Mumbai.

Alleged role in AIFFs suspension by FIFA

In August 2022, FIFA suspended the All India Football Federation for violating its statutes on third-party interference. India was stripped off its hosting rights for international football tournaments, including the 2022 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup scheduled for October 2022. Praful Patel who had completed his three terms and 12 years as AIFF president in December 2020, is now accused of arranging a letter from FIFA and Asian Football Confederation threatening a ban on India.

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