I-League 2017/18: East Bengal ask AIFF to ban Minerva Punjab owner Ranjit Bajaj ahead of potential title-decider
Ahead of the potential title decider between East Bengal and Minerva Punjab, a new twist has been seen off the field.
Ranjit Bajaj had recently claimed that two of his Minerva Punjab players had been approached for match-fixing. As per the owner, the two players in focus were offered huge monetary values which was reported to the authorities by the club's management.
In an interesting turn of events, East Bengal, in a letter to the All India Football Federation (AIFF), have requested the allegations made by Bajaj to be taken seriously. But the Red and Golds have also suggested to take strict action and possibly suspend Bajaj if his claims are found baseless.
In their request to the AIFF, East Bengal have called for strict action against all the Minerva Punjab authorities if the match-fixing allegations are found to be false. The Kolkata giants also cited the example of Arnab Mondal who was suspended and given a fine rather instantly in a racial discrimination case and want a quick retort from the board.
East Bengal want AIFF to take severe action before the two sides meet on Tuesday, February 13. It remains to be seen how the managing board will take a stance on Bajaj's allegations and East Bengal's surprising call for a suspension.
Bajaj met with a ban for seven games last April for violating the code of conduct during a league game. The Minerva Punjab owner has also been pretty vocal about how the administration works on social media.
Whatever discourse takes place over this issue in the coming days, one thing is for certain that the title race between East Bengal and Minerva Punjab has been spiced up due to the calls made by the Khalid Jamil-managed side to suspend Ranjit Bajaj. It has made Tuesday's encounter between the two sides one to watch out for.