Old guards want CoA re­moved

Srini­vasan, Thakur, Shirke & Shah take part in un­of­fi­cial meet­ing, BCCI units to ap­proach SC for elec­tions and bring to its no­tice dif­fer­ences be­tween Rai & Edulji

Sunday Express - - NEWS - ATREYO MUKHOPADHYAY

Fed up with the state of af­fairs in the BCCI and the ways of the Com­mit­tee of Ad­min­is­tra­tors (CoA), a bunch of mem­bers have de­cided to ap­peal to the Supreme Court seek­ing re­moval of Vinod Rai and Di­ana Edulji, and elec­tions. The ap­peal is likely to be filed on Jan­uary 17, when the court is sched­uled to hear the BCCI case |

FED up with the state of af­fairs in the BCCI and ag­grieved with the ways of the Com­mit­tee of Ad­min­is­tra­tors (CoA), a bunch of mem­bers have come to­gether and de­cided to ap­peal to the Supreme Court seek­ing re­moval of Vinod Rai and Di­ana Edulji and con­duct of elec­tions. It is likely to be filed on Jan­uary 17, when the court is sched­uled to hear the BCCI case.

Strik­ing was the pres­ence of heavy­weight for­mer of­fi­cials at the meet­ing in Mum­bai’s Taj Lands End on Fri­day evening, where rep­re­sen­ta­tives of around 20 units were ei­ther present or took part via con­fer­ence call. For­mer pres­i­dents N Srini­vasan, Anurag Thakur and for­mer sec­re­taries Ni­ran­jan Shah and Ajay Shirke were part of dis­cus­sions, with trea­surer Anirudh Chaudhry. Prom­i­nent among oth­ers was BJP pres­i­dent Amit Shah’s son Jay, who heads Gu­jarat Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion. Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion of Ben­gal chief Sourav Gan­guly linked up on­line. The asso­ciations of Vi­darbha and As­sam were not present.

It has been learnt that Srini­vasan was ac­tive in mak­ing the meet­ing hap­pen, which some mem­bers had been think­ing of hav­ing for some time. The Tamil Nadu strong­man set the ball rolling in the meet­ing by de­liv­er­ing the open­ing ad­dress. “Our ba­sic con­tention is, let BCCI elec­tions take place. The re­vised con­sti­tu­tion is al­ready in place and in­stead of con­duct­ing elec­tions fol­low­ing that, the CoA is de­lay­ing it on some pre­text or the other. We will urge the court to con­sider this,” said a state unit of­fice-bearer, who at­tended the meet­ing.

This gath­er­ing of BCCI mem- bers is sig­nif­i­cant be­cause ac­cord­ing to a CoA or­der, they can’t hold meet­ings of­fi­cially, or book ho­tels and travel tick­ets us­ing the state asso­ciations’ funds. But even though it was an in­for­mal get-to­gether, it was im­por­tant con­sid­er­ing that so many of them came un­der one roof af­ter a long time and seemed united in ex­press­ing griev­ances.

Pre­dictably, they listed the much-pub­li­cised dif­fer­ence of opin­ion be­tween CoA chief Rai and Edulji as fore­most. “The mem­bers ex­pressed shock at the man­ner in which de­ci­sion mak­ing was hap­pen­ing in the CoA where the de­ci­sions and views of one mem­ber were be­ing ig­nored while de­ci­sions of the other were be­ing ex­e­cuted ir­reg­u­larly de­spite there be­ing a dead­lock in de­ci­sion-mak­ing on such de­ci­sions,” read a state­ment.

In­con­sis­tency in main­tain­ing stan­dards for in­quiries into acts of mis­be­haviour by play­ers and the BCCI CEO, chang­ing el­i­gi­bil­ity rules af­ter the start of the do­mes­tic sea­son to suit cer­tain in­di­vid­u­als, ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties in post­ing of match ref­er­ees and um­pires, de­gen­er­a­tion of the sys­tem to record matches for as­sess­ing the per­for­mance of um­pires and ig­nor­ing in­puts of the tech­ni­cal com­mit­tee headed by Gan­guly are some of the other ob­jec­tions.

“The mem­bers de­cided that they would bring forth cer­tain points be­fore the Supreme Court in or­der to en­sure that democ­racy is re­stored in de­ci­sion mak­ing es­pe­cially on crick­et­ing mat­ters so that In­dian cricket does not suf­fer,” said the state­ment.

While it has to be seen how the court re­acts, this move by the BCCI mem­bers is likely to in­crease pres­sure on the CoA, which of late is mak­ing head­lines for un­wanted rea­sons.

For­mer pres­i­dents N Srini­vasan and Anurag Thakur were part of dis­cus­sions

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