Was not informed about Rathour’s conflict: Rai
Mumbai: Vinod Rai, the Supreme Court-appointed head of the Committee of Administrators (COA) says he “was not informed about Vikram Rathour's conflict of interest” by BCCI’s head of operations, Saba Karim, before appointing him as the batting coach for India ‘A’ and the India Under-19 teams last week.
Speaking to TOI, Rai said: “Neither me nor my colleague Diana Edulji was informed about any conflict. On the contrary, I was told that Rahul Dravid has approved it. If it’s true that Rathour is conflicted, and Rahul wasn’t informed about the same, I’ll be taking this up very seriously”. Dravid, who is in Kerala with the India ‘A’ team could not be reached.”By the way, conflicts aside, would you require a batting coach when you have someone like Dravid with you?” say sources tracking developments.
Rathour is a relative of Under-19 selector Ashish Kapoor and a cousin of former BCCI president Anurag Thakur. “In the case of Kapoor, it’s a clear case of conflict. What’s happening here? In Thakur’s case, it’s not wrong to be related to him but then, the COA has denied a former BCCI employee a job because he has worked with Thakur in the past. There can’t be apples and oranges,” sources said.
Krishna Pophale, the former executive assistant to Thakur when the latter was BCCI chief, had applied some months ago for a role of in the Board’s assistant operations team but the application was rejected by the COA because of his earlier working relations with Thakur. “So, how is Rathour okay? By the way, the COA talks much about due diligence. Did it do due diligence this time? They made such a ruckus over appointment of women’s coach,” say sources.
Pophale has been requesting BCCI to give back his employment in BCCI for close to a year now after he was unceremoniously asked to leave in 2017. “That boy can’t work because he worked with Thakur in the past. But Rathour can, even if he’s related. What’s going on?” say BCCI members.
It is learnt that Karim approached Dravid with the names of Rathour and Vijay Yadav (appointed for Under-19) after WV Raman left the National Cricket Academy to join the women's national team as head coach. Rai, who was in Singapore on Sunday evening, sounded miffed with the developments. “I will speak with Rahul (Dravid) about this’, he said.