New Delhi: A FIFA women's regional development seminar and India development workshop kicked off here on Monday with more than 100 delegates taking part in it.
Besides the delegates from 11 countries, AIFF General Secretary Kushal Das, Senior Vice-President Subrata Dutta, FIFA Regional Development Officer for South and Central Asia Shaji Prabhakaran were also present.
Moya Dodd, vice-president of Asian Football Confederation and a co-opted member of FIFA's Executive Committee, Heike Ulrich, hgead of women's football at the German Football Association and Hesterine de Reus, former Dutch footballer who recently worked as head Coach of Australian women's team gave their expert views.
Dodd, who is one of the three women Executive Committee members at the FIFA, pointed out the areas of improvement such as building on the 50% women playing population, increasing the number of women referees, having more grassroot programmes for women.
The Australian stressed on the importance of having a well-established women's league which she said was the touchstone to spreading the game across length and breadth of every member association.
"A League is a must and as part of every federation we should ensure a proper women's league is in place with Youth Development and Grassroots aligned with it," she said.
On India's plans to work out a sustainable format for the first-ever women's league to take place, Dodd said she would ensure full assistance from FIFA and AFC.
AIFF President Praful Patel in his message said, "Women's football is of key importance in the development of football all over the world and in India. We have given special focus to the development of women's game by including it as a special strategic goal in our Strategic Plan 2014-2017, which was launched by the Secretary General of FIFA."