An application has been filed in the Supreme Court to derail the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s plans to allow Sourav Ganguly and Jay Shah to complete three years in the BCCI office.
Jharkhand Cricket Association life member Naresh K Malkani has alleged that the BCCI is seeking to amend its constitution and dilute the Justice Lodha Committee recommendations with a “mala fide intention”.
The application, if accepted by the Supreme Court, can potentially derail the BCCI plans to allow president Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah to extend their present tenure in the board to full three years.
SportzFront is in possession of a copy of the application submitted to the Supreme Court registry.
Both Ganguly and Shah have completed six consecutive years as cricket administrators – combined in their respective State bodies and the BCCI. As per the present constitution of the board, it is now mandatory for them to serve a three-year cooling-off period.
However, the BCCI General Body in December last year had resolved the constitution. The board has subsequently sought permission from the Supreme Court to amend its constitution. It wants to amend the “cooling off period” clause and keep the term in the BCCI office separate from the period of service in the State bodies.
The BCCI wants to amend Rule 6.4 of the constitution, which as present reads as:
“An office-bearer who has held any post for two consecutive terms either in a State association or in the BCCI (or in a combination of both) shall not be eligible to contest any further election without completing a cooling-off period of three years….” to
“A President or Secretary who has served in such a position for two consecutive terms in the BCCI shall not be eligible to contest any further election without completing a cooling-off period of three years….”
Furthermore, the BCCI also wants to amend Rule 45 that makes it mandatory to seek the approval of the Supreme Court for implementing any amendments in the board’s constitution.
The reformed clause at present reads that “These Rules and Regulations of the BCCI shall not be repealed, added to, amended or altered except when passed and adopted by a 3/4th majority of the members present and entitled to vote at a Special General Meeting of the General Body convened for the purpose or at the Annual General meeting. Any such amendment will not be given effect to without the leave of the Hon’ble Supreme Court.”
The board wants to amend it to as “These Rules and Regulations of the BCCI shall not be repealed, added to, amended or altered except when passed and adopted by a 3/4th majority of the members present and entitled to vote at a Special General Meeting of the General Body convened for the purpose or at the Annual General meeting.”
The BCCI application has been listed for August 17 alongside the BCCI vs Cricket Association of Bihar case. The CAB president Aditya Verma had stated earlier that his lawyers would not object to the BCCI application. That would have left the BCCI application solely to the court’s sole discretion.
The move by Makani can now change the entire equation.
Makani, who also claims himself to the be a whistleblower in the IPL match-fixing case in 2013, has pleaded that the present BCCI constitution was adopted on the directions of the Hon’ble Justice Lodha Committee, which upon deliberation on all the issues had recommended the implementation of an amended constitution to govern the affairs of the BCCI.
The recommendations had led to the Supreme Court’s direction to the board and its affiliated units to amend their constitution in line with the Lodha Committee recommendations, states the application.
Malkani has alleged that the present BCCI administration, comprising president Sourav Ganugly, secretary Jay Shah, treasurer Arun Dhumal, and joint secretary Jayesh George, in the first meeting of the board on December 1 last year had passed the agenda to dilute the Lodha Committee recommendations with a mala fide intention.
Under the garb of the dilution of reforms the BCCI administration is trying to seize the board’s affairs, he had alleged.
He has argued that Ganguly would not have been sitting in the BCCI post had it not been for the implementation of the Lodha Committee recommendations.
Tenure of Shah as the BCCI secretary has expired in May and Ganguly has completed his term in the BCCI office on July 27.
Malkani has alleged that the (BCCI) meeting called by Shah in July was illegal and against the well-established provisions of law.
Highlighting another breach of the BCCI constitution, the petition alleges that the board vice-president Mahim Verma also continues to be the secretary of the Cricket Associaiton of Uttrakhand.
The petition points out that veteran cricket administrators like Sharad Pawar and N Srinivasan stand barred from the BCCI only on account of the reforms laid down by the Lodha Committee and implemented under the direction of the Apex Court.
The petitioner argues that if the Supreme Court agrees to allow the reforms to be diluted then Srinivasan, Sanjay Jagdale and Anurag Thakur should be allowed to return and helm the BCCI.
The petitioner has prayed to the court to disallow the BCCI application seeking dilution of the recommendations made by the Lodha Committee.
He further urges for a direct the office-bearers as on the financial year 2013-14 to helm the BCCI and the present administration to comply with the Lodha Committee recommendations and serve the cooling-off period.
The application has been moved directly by Makani and not through any counsel. It will be to the sole discretion of the court to take conginzance of the application.
Makani has earlier also urged Mr Justice L Nageswara Rao, one of the two judges in the Bench, to recuse himself from the case.
Mr Justice Rao is hearing the BCCI matter along with Chief Justice Mr Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde.