The Telegraph
Friday , March 28 , 2014
CIMA Gallary

Ravi Savant: Allowing Srini to buy CSK was a mistake

Jagmohan Dalmiya

Calcutta/New Delhi: Jagmohan Dalmiya has appealed to all state associations and concerned parties to come forward for the cause of Indian cricket and follow the clean-up process that the Supreme Court has stressed upon.

At a media conference on Thursday, at the Eden, the former ICC and BCCI president said: “The situation is bad. Otherwise, Supreme Court wouldn’t have imposed itself so forcefully. Why should go to an extent where our action has to be explained?

“It is evident that Indian cricket is at crossroads with the BCCI’s prestige at stake. Therefore, I appeal to all concerned to come forward together for the cause of Indian cricket and follow the clean-up process that the Honourable Supreme Court has so forcefully insisted upon.”

Asked if this was the biggest crisis the Board is going through, Dalmiya replied: “At the moment, we have to abide by whatever the apex court says. Back in 2000, we had faced similar difficulties. What I’m saying is paradise is not lost yet.

“Collectively, we can still save the situation and we should all work towards a favourable solution. I say this being an optimist.”

Acknowledging that an emergent meeting would be welcome, Dalmiya said there’s still time to sort things out and have a clean IPL on this occasion.

“Not having the IPL this year is the ultimate scenario. But I feel it’s not too late to act upon every such measure I had suggested with a proper approach. It is indeed the time to transform the recommendations and measures into action immediately without any further delay for a cleaner cricket and cleaner IPL,” he emphasised.

Reacting to the development, vice-president Ravi Savant said that Srinivasan should not have been allowed to buy the Chennai Super Kings team in the IPL on the ground of conflict of interest.

“The first mistake was to have allowed Srinivasan to buy Chennai Super Kings. There is conflict of interest. He should not have been allowed to buy CSK at that time,” he said.

Savant, who is the BCCI vice-president from West Zone, said the Board will have to act according to the Supreme Court order. “The SC has given just one day and it has said it will pass its interim order tomorrow (Thursday). So there is no time to call an emergent meeting of the Board. Whatever the SC says in its order tomorrow, we will have to abide by it. There is no other way,” he added.

Former secretary Niranjan Shah felt the rot in the BCCI has gone too far and the Board will now have to clean up the game before the public loses interest in it.

“It’s a bad day for BCCI. Things have gone far beyond and it will only hurt cricket a lot. But I think in the interest of cleaning up the game, may be the Supreme Court’s observations are correct. Whatever the Supreme Court decides BCCI will have to abide by it,” he said.

Former treasurer Ajay Shirke blamed the Board members for bringing the scenario to such a pass. “We have to wait for the Supreme Court’s order, but this is of great sorrow. I am extremely sad to see this day dawn upon an institution which has weathered 75-odd years of ups and downs and have come up on top several times,” he said.

“I think here we have a case where our president feels he is absolutely right and has done nothing wrong. That is his perception but the perception of the media and the entire world is different”, he told Times Now.

“I think the members have brought this situation upon BCCI and unless they really sit down and introspect and unless we do that it’s going to be very difficult. You have to put the interest of of the institution above everything. There is no one who really stood up to that.”

Another vice-president Rajeev Shukla said he would comment only after the Supreme Court passes its interim order. “We need to wait for the Supreme Court’s final order. Once the court gives its final verdict then only it will be wise to comment on this matter,” he said.