Several affiliated associations of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have decided to write to the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) pointing out various discrepancies in the implementation of the Justice Lodha Committee reforms and that elections cannot be held till the apex court decides on the pending applications.
This has been necessitated by an advisory issued by the CoA clarifying certain aspects of the disqualification rule and cooling-off period that have cast a cloud over voting rights of several members in the BCCI and its member associations.
The elections have to be completed by September 28 but the state units want a change in schedule after the CoA asked them to ensure that the six-year tenure cap for officials included the time spent by them in the working committees of their respective bodies.
At least 15 units were part of a teleconference on Tuesday evening and included the likes of former BCCI president N. Srinivasan and Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) chief Sourav Ganguly.
On Wednesday, the CAB decided to defy the CoA directive. “We won’t go by the latest CoA directive... We’ll abide by the Supreme Court order,” Sourav said.
The letter to the CoA, which is in possession of The Telegraph, points out various discrepancies and concludes saying: “… the CoA lacks the authority to hold the elections, especially since the Hon’ble Supreme Court is seized of the matter. The exercise undertaken by the CoA is null and void and the CoA is acting beyond their ambit in attempting to force state associations to conduct elections and the CoA also cannot hold the BCCI elections till the Hon’ble Supreme Court decides all the pending issues and directs to hold the elections.
“The communication sent to the state associations is also without jurisdiction and therefore not binding...”
The letter adds: “Given the facts and circumstances, the tearing hurry in which the CoA has been leaning on the state associations to amend their constitutions and to conduct elections (whether due or not) without awaiting the final determination of the pending applications filed by the state associations, not only amounts to disregarding the orders passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court but also manifests the intention of the CoA to render the said applications infructuous.”
The directive has landed the Kerala Cricket Association (KCA) in a bizarre situation. Jayesh George was elected president unopposed but will fail to meet the criterion since he has also served as a working committee member in the KCA.
There’s a school of thought that one influential member of the Narendra Modi government wants to control the running of BCCI’s affairs and hence the move to sideline most of the existing electorate of each association.
“Rajat Sharma is the front-runner handpicked by the powers-that-be to head the BCCI. This could be a way to make the run easy for him,” said an influential member.