The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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BCCI likely to challenge Jadeja award

New Delhi, April 19: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is likely to challenge arbitrator Justice (retd) J.K. Mehra’s award in Ajay Jadeja’s favour.

Justice Mehra set aside the five-year (match-fixing related) ban, slapped by the BCCI’s disciplinary committee in December 2000, on January 27.

The BCCI and Jadeja settled for arbitration, under the Arbitration and Conciliation Act of 1996, after the one-time ODI captain moved the Delhi High Court against the disciplinary committee’s action.

If the 90-day period for enforcing/contesting the award is deemed to begin from January 27 itself — and not when all respondents received its copy — then the BCCI has until April 26 to react.

“While the actual decision will wholly be influenced by the opinion of lawyers (Gopal Subramanium, Harish Salve and Usha Nath Banerjee) who represented the BCCI, many within the set-up strongly feel the award should be challenged,” a well-placed source told The Telegraph this evening.

Apparently, the Jadeja issue figured “prominently” during the BCCI office-bearers’ informal meeting here this month. The office-bearers, of course, had assembled for President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam’s reception for the World Cup squad.

According to the source, the lawyers’ opinion has probably already been forwarded to the BCCI. “Given the whispers, it won’t surprise if challenging the award is recommended,” the source added.

However, if it does come to that, it’s not clear whether the BCCI must return to the Delhi High Court itself.

Significantly, Jadeja isn’t the only one waiting for the BCCI to act — for different reasons, as interested are many within Team India. Indeed, quite a few are unlikely to be thrilled if the award goes unchallenged.

It’s no secret, after all, that some players will prefer sitting out to (again) sharing the dressing room with Jadeja. Perhaps, the BCCI will keep this in mind.

Felicitation put off

Meanwhile, the World Cup squad’s felicitation (by the BCCI), slated for April 28, has been put off owing to “practical problems.” Accordingly, the April 26-27 working committee meeting has also been deferred.

Both were to be held in New Delhi.

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