Putting up a brave face despite losing the status of a National Sports Federation, the Cricket Board (BCCI) on Tuesday said it was an autonomous body affiliated with the ICC and thus the sole body to pick the national team.
BCCI failed to submit necessary documents to the Sports Ministry and thus the government on Monday withdrew customs duty exemption on import of goods by the cricket body or bodies certified by it.
"BCCI was always an autonomous body. A lot of pressure has been created in the last few months that we should register with the government.. the Sports Ministry (but) there is a different feeling within the BCCI," BCCI Chief Administrative Officer Ratnakar Shetty said. The senior BCCI official also said that the revocation of the concession would not affect the hosting of World Cup in India from next month.
"As member of the ICC only BCCI pick the team. It (decision) would not have any bearing on the World Cup," Shetty said. However, the decision, according to experts is a setback to the stakeholders associated with the forthcoming World Cup to be staged in India as the country would now be visited with a customs duty burden of up to 26.85% on sports requisites.
India along with Bangladesh and Sri Lanka is hosting the ICC World Cup Cricket from February 19 to April 2.