A conflict of interest complaint can potentially put Virat Kohli in some serious trouble.
Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association life member Sanjeev Gupta has filed the complaint with the Board of Control for Cricket in India Ethics Officer DK Jain for the Team India captain also holding a director’s position in sports and talent management companies.
The complainant has alleged that Kohli’s position in the company while also being the captain of the national cricket team is in breach of the conflict of interest clause under the BCCI rule 38(4).
Gupta, referring to Kohli’s alleged position in the Virat Kohli Sports LLP and Cornerstone Ventures Partners LLP, has said that the two companies while managing the star cricketer’s business interests also have agreements with other cricketers.
“Kohli holds two posts: one as player and captain of the Indian team and other as a Director of Sports marketing company which contracts fellow Indian cricketers,” read the excerpts produced from the report by Republic TV.
The complainant further alleges that “Kohli is the Director in Virat Kohli Sports LLP and Cornerstone Ventures Partners LLP and his fellow directors in these companies are the directors of Cornerstone Sport and Entertainment Private Limited which manages Indian captain’s commercial interests and also signs other cricketers”
“Annexed is the complaint dated 4 July 2020 under BCCI Rule 39(2)(b) against Shri Virat Kohli for breaching BCCI Rule 38(4) .”
“2- Original hard copy duly signed complaint in an affidavit along with 1 more set ( in all 2 sets ) is posted today 04 July 2020 to Learned BCCI Ethics Officer & I set is also posted to Respondent, Shri Virat Kohli by registered post today 4 July 2020. Postal receipts are enclosed in PDF file Annexed .”
“3 – As apprised that BCCI office is closed, hence Humble request to Learned BCCI Ethics Officer to at once issue notice to Respondent to file a reply in affidavit & also kindly fix a date for hearing .”
“4 – My sole pure intent behind filing each & every precise/factual complaint is for 100 % compliance of Lodha Reforms & Supreme Court approved BCCI Constitution without any personal agenda & without any vested interest.
Gupta, who had also sent a copy of the complaint to Kohli, has pleaded with the ombudsman to seek a written reply from Kohli.
In the strongly worded letter, Gupta further stated that “I am least bothered about the persona/aura of the individual, as I am only bothered for 100 % compliance. No individual, how Rich / Big / Influential / Powerful one is, can (n)ever be above the law of the Land “ The Supreme Court “ verdict, everybody has to Respect, Accept & 100 % comply forthwith & fall in line. Nothing to attain & nothing of mine at stake, it is Supreme Court verdicts sanctity & compliance at stake for which I am all alone combating day in & day out for last 4 years & will continue to do so till my mind & body will support said noble cause/intent without any fear/favour/influence/ assistance/ influence/news/publicity, I have not & will not leave any stone unturned for the same.”
The Lodha Committee in the course of redrafting the BCCI constitution had asserted that conflict of interest is an area that needs to be fought hard for better administration of the gentlemen’s game.
Country’s highest paid brand icon, Kohli is the sole representative of cricket and India in the Forbes’ latest list of top 100 highest earning sportspersons.