Like his meteoric rise in the BCCI, former IPL commissioner Lalit Modi’s fall from grace too didn’t take time. On Wednesday, the Board’s special general body (SGM) took just a few minutes to expel Modi for life.
The day began in Chennai with Haryana Cricket Association secretary, Anirudh Chaudhary, proposing the ban after recommendations of the disciplinary committee were read out. Orissa Cricket Association president, Ranjib Biswal, seconded the proposal, which was unanimously accepted by members of the 30 affiliated units.
Explaining the ban on Modi, the BCCI statement read, “(It is) resolved that Mr Lalit Modi is guilty of committing acts of serious misconduct and indiscipline, and therefore, in exercise of powers as per Regulation 32 of the Memorandum and Rules and Regulations of the Board, Mr Lalit Modi be and is hereby expelled from the BCCI.”
It added, “He shall forfeit all his rights and privileges as administrator. He shall not in future be entitled to hold any position or office, or be admitted in any committee or associate member of the Board.”
The BCCI’s disciplinary committee had found Modi guilty on eight different charges of various acts of indiscipline and misconduct. The charges were pressed by the BCCI in 2010 soon after Modi’s dramatic exit from the league he founded.
Although the flurry of activity around the Modi issue pointed to an urgency in expelling the outspoken but controversial official, some BCCI officials had also felt it was less important compared to N Srinivasan’s prime objective of holding on to power.
However, the manner in which the SGM finally expelled Modi also shows that Srinivasan, whose hold over the Board had looked shaky in the wake of developments following the IPL spot-fixing scandals, wanted to sent a message to show he is in command.
Modi, though, made a last attempt to escape the impending sanction by writing to the BCCI members and requesting them to refrain from any decision, as the matter was sub-judice. But the members would have none it, as not a single unit came out in his support. “It was a unanimous decision. We were all in support of life ban for Modi as suggested by the disciplinary committee,” a BCCI member told HT.
Modi’s lawyer, Mehmood Abdi, slammed the decision and said the expulsion would be challenged in court. “The disciplinary process was vitiated by malice, prejudice and personal bias, which we will challenge in a court of law and expose all those persons with vested interests.”