N Srinivasan is likely to face grave consequences if his son-in-law M Gurunath’s involvement with bookmakers is proven by the police, but the most damning fall-out of it could be the scrapping of the Chennai Super Kings.
It will need a really strong stand on the part of the other Indian cricket board members to take the extreme step of terminating CSK from the Indian Twenty20 League, but it definitely has a provision in the BCCI-T20 rule book.
Srinivasan & Co will be keeping their fingers crossed that Gurunath’s interrogation by the Mumbai Police doesn’t lead to a situation where the team is left vulnerable against the Clause No 12.3 of the BCCI-T20 and franchise contract. It’s titled as the termination clause with point (c) stating: “the Franchisee, any Franchisee Group Company and/or any Owner acts in any way which has a material adverse effect upon the reputation or standing of the League, BCCI-T20. BCCI, the Franchisee, the Team (or any other team in the League) and/or the game of cricket.”
Anticipating such a move, the India Cements and CSK management has chosen to wash hands of Gurunath incase he is arrested for his alleged role with bookmakers when they issued a statement that he was not the Team Principal and labeled him merely as a member of the team management.
“If Guru arrested CSK franchise has to be terminated with immediate effect. Reauctioned later,” tweeted Lalit Modi, who was instrumental in framing the rules as a founding member of the T20 League.
What line of action the BCCI members will take will depend on the outcome of Gurunath’s interrogation by the Police. At the moment, President Srinivasan holds tremendous clout in the Board. But, nothing can be predicted in the BCCI’s power-game where equations have change quickly. Something, which Modi will vouch for. He was all-powerful at the start of the third IPL season and at the end of it, he had been forced to live the life of a fugitive.
A senior functionary of the BCCI told the Hindustan Times that any discussion on CSK’s fate was premature, but he didn’t rule out anything either. He said everything will start happening only after the findings of Gurunath’s interrogation come out. Explaining the functioning of the BCCI he said: “The majority will decide. All activities will happen on the day of the T20 final. First of all, it will be about who will bell the cat and raise the issue?”