The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sharad Pawar has supported the view expressed by two senior board officials, Lalit Modi and IS Bindra, that the ICC is “behaving like the East India Company”.
“That is the general feeling prevailing in countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh,” Pawar said when asked to react on Bindra and Modi’s comments.
Pawar said India would not sign the Members Participation Agreement (MPA) in its present form, though he did “not foresee” the issue preventing the team from taking part in future World Cups and other ICC events.
“We won’t sign the MPA in its current form. If we do sign it, it will harm the players as they will not be able to do any ads for the next nine months,” Pawar said.
However, he said that the BCCI would “find a way out” of the situation.
The top brass of the BCCI discussed the issue here in the evening and constituted a four-member committee, headed by Bindra, to settle the matter with the ICC. Arun Jaitley, Modi and N Srinivasan are the other members of the committee.
“We hope that the issue will be amicably settled soon,” said Rajiv Shukla, the head of the BCCI’s media cell.
Earlier, Dave Richardson, the ICC’s general manager (operations), said that though he believes that the MPA controversy would soon be resolved amicably, the onus lies with the BCCI to act fast to avoid further confusion over the issue.
“There is no big fight between the BCCI and the ICC. We don't expect India to take any extreme steps,” said Richardson.
“India are a key part of world cricket and we want them to remain so,” Richardson said, playing down fears that India might pull out of the World Cup next year.
Richardson has been camping here for the last few days and a few BCCI members have individually talked with him on the issue.