There seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel for N Srinivasan. In a setback to the beleaguered BCCI president, the Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to stay the Bombay High Court order that declared the board’s two-member panel that probed the fixing charges in the Indian Twenty20 League as illegal.
According to experts closely monitoring the board’s functioning, it means, the proceedings on August 29, the day on which the Supreme Court agreed to hear BCCI, will be crucial to Srinivasan’s future.
The timing is important because the BCCI elections are slated for September-end and any further delay will increase the probability of the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association president missing out on the one-year extension as the board president he was looking for.
Till August 29 status quo would be maintained and Jagmohan Dalmiya will continue as an interim head of the BCCI.
The SC order by the bench of Justice AK Patnaik and Justice JS Khehar came on BCCI’s appeal challenging the July 30 Bombay HC order.
The court gave two weeks time to Bihar cricket association, the petitioners at the Bombay HC, to file its response to BCCI’s contentions.
Challenging the HC order, senior advocate CA Sundaram, appearing for BCCI, submitted that the board was entitled to set up a two-member probe panel comprising outside members and the HC had erred by holding that operational rules mandated presence of at least one member of the IPL Code of Behaviour Committee.
Bihar CA, however, opposed the contention saying the BCCI interim president had no power to decide on these issues as he was appointed just to see day to day proceedings of the board. Nalini Chidambram, appearing for them, also raised question on who decided the constitution of the panel. The bench then remarked that the two judges are from Chennai itself. She replied “That is the problem.”
Srinivasan had stepped aside following constitution of the probe panel. One of the mandates of the committee was to probe charges of betting against Srinivasan’s son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan.
On July 28 the panel of Justice T Jayarama Chouta and Justice R Balasubramanian submitted its report giving a clean chit to all those against whom the probe was conducted.
Two days later the HC raised objection on the process to form the panel to probe the IPL scandal, which also saw the arrest of three Rajasthan Players - Sreesnath, Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila.