July 9, 2021


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Sourav Ganguly, Jay Shah term extension: BCCI moves Supreme Court again

The BCCI has filed a second petition within the Supreme Court docket of India, following the one in December final 12 months, searching for approval for a number of radical amendments beneficial at its annual common assembly final 12 months. Amongst them is a proposal to permit president Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah to proceed of their posts till 2025, successfully bypassing the mandated cooling-off interval.

The petition was filed on April 21* after the unique petition was not given a listening to; the courtroom is but take up the matter. The amendments, if accepted, stand to wipe out the key reforms the courtroom itself had mandated in August 2018 as a part of the board’s new structure drafted on the again of the suggestions made by the RM Lodha Committee.

In its April petition, the BCCI has instructed the courtroom that the three-year cooling-off interval for an office-bearer following a six-year tenure is an eligibility standards needed solely to contest the elections. As soon as elected, the BCCI mentioned, the office-bearer might proceed to remain within the place for six years at one place – board or state affiliation – earlier than serving the cooling-off interval.

The opposite amendments that have been handed by the BCCI common physique unanimously on December 1 final 12 months included modifying the disqualification standards, giving unprecedented powers to the BCCI secretary, and stopping the courtroom from having any say if the board needs to change the structure.

The BCCI is anxious as a result of, if the courtroom does not see the problem the identical approach, Ganguly and Shah should enter their cooling-off durations quickly. The 2 of them earned the senior-most posts within the board as a part of the brand new administration on October 23 final 12 months. However that they had nearly ten months within the roles as a result of, as per the BCCI’s structure, an office-bearer might solely serve two consecutive phrases (six years) individually on the state affiliation or the board or a mix of each.

Ganguly’s time period ends this July, as he began as secretary on the Cricket Affiliation of Bengal in 2014, following which he turned the affiliation’s president after the loss of life of Jagmohan Dalmiya in 2015, and was re-elected in September 2019 earlier than transferring to the BCCI.

As for Shah, he was elected because the joint secretary of the Gujarat Cricket Affiliation (GCA) in 2014. The interior information of the GCA counsel that Shah’s tenure began on September 8, 2013. There isn’t any readability over Shah’s tenure at BCCI, although.

Final week, after a report in Outlook recommended that Shah had approached the courtroom searching for an extension as BCCI secretary after ending six years as an officer-bearer earlier this month, ESPNcricinfo contacted him over e mail – on Could 19 – to verify the main points. Shah has not acknowledged it but.

In the meantime, Shah has been a part of key BCCI conferences and was additionally a part of the final week’s name with Cricket South Africa, which gave a cautious nod to supporting Ganguly if he have been to contest for the ICC chairman’s position, which can be vacated by Shashank Manohar on the ICC’s annual convention, scheduled for July.

By the way, Shah didn’t signal the BCCI’s final media launch [the board’s response to the Indian government allowing stadia to open for training without crowds], issued on Could 17. The media launch was authorised by Arun Dhumal, the board’s treasurer. And it was Dhumal once more who signed the BCCI’s April petition to the courtroom.

“It is submitted that the provision contained in Rule 6.4 (cooling-off period) applies to the eligibility to contest the election and not continuance of an elected person who is already elected before the commencement of disqualification, the general body has, in its wisdom, thought it necessary to amend the said provision so as to ensure that in the fresh elections after 3 years, the BCCI is not deprived of the experience gained by the individuals in the State Association,” the BCCI mentioned within the petition, accessed by ESPNcricinfo.

To help its case, the BCCI additionally hooked up the minutes of the AGM the place the amendments have been adopted. On the cooling-off interval, the BCCI mentioned all of the members [state associations] felt the three-year break was “creating an obstruction in selection of talented and experienced hands, but also affects the continuity of the individual’s ability to serve in administration unnecessarily”. All members, the board mentioned, agreed that each the president and the secretary ought to serve for six years at one place earlier than beginning the cooling-off interval.

“It is respectfully submitted that this amendment is made preserving the spirit of the directions issued by this Hon’ble Court in as much as it is ensured that if any office bearer of the BCCI completes 6 years as an office bearer of the BCCI, he stands disqualified,” the BCCI mentioned.

BCCI factors fingers at Committee of Directors once more

The Committee of Directors (CoA), appointed in 2017 to oversee the functioning of the BCCI, had failed to know how the board capabilities, the BCCI argued.

The BCCI instructed the courtroom that cricket in India was regulated via a “three-tier” pyramidal construction: workplace bearers beginning at district stage, transferring to the state affiliation, earlier than progressing to the board itself. “By the very nature of this three-tier structure, a person necessarily passes through many terms in other two tiers before he is experienced to be able to effectively contribute in BCCI in the larger national interest.”

The CoA had ready the draft structure in 2018, and had tweaked the board’s authentic structure by together with the Lodha suggestions, which the courtroom had authorized first in 2016 earlier than sure reforms have been revised.

“The draft (constitution) was prepared by the persons who did not have the advantage and benefit of the ground level experience of functioning of this three tier structure in which the transition of cricket administrators is stage wise which is in the larger interest of the game of cricket,” the BCCI mentioned in its newest petition. “Any provision which has a direct or an indirect effect of restricting persons with rich and varied experience whereby they have acquired and strengthened the organising capacity, finance generating capacity and administrative skills will be to the detriment of the game of cricket and would, therefore, necessarily be against public interest and national interest as our teams play against teams of all cricket playing countries.”

Altering the structure: Not “practical” to method courtroom each time

One other key modification being sought by the BCCI is to make itself the binding authority if the board’s structure wants tweaks. In December, the final physique authorized the modification that proposed the BCCI structure might be “repealed, added to, amended or altered” by the three-fourth majority of elected and eligible representatives, with the courtroom having no function within the course of.

Within the AGM, the BCCI said that the final physique felt the members’ “autonomy and right to seek legitimate changes” was being “restricted” and an approval from the courtroom each time was “not practical”. However the BCCI mentioned within the April petition that it could await the ultimate order of the courtroom earlier than making the mentioned modification formal.

*1615 GMT This story was up to date to replicate the petition was filed on April 21

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