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Cracks in BCA over Lodha reforms implementation

Bihar Cricket Association secretary replaces treasurer, other office-bearers, belonging to a rival faction as infighting takes a serious turn

patna Updated: Feb 19, 2017 18:43 IST
Pradeep Modak
Bihar cricket association

Cricket players at the BCA selection trials, in Patna. (HT Photo)

Cracks have appeared in the Bihar Cricket Association (BCA) over implementation of the Lodha committee recommendations on structural reforms, as ordered by the Supreme Court. 

In a surprise move, a BCA group, led by its secretary Ravi Shankar Prasad Singh, showed the door to some office-bearers, including treasurer Ram Kumar, justifying it on the pretext of implementing reforms suggested by the Lodha panel. 

The rival group led by Ram Kumar, who was the coach of deputy chief minister Tejashwi Prasad Yadav during the latter’s cricketing days, alleged that secretary Singh had taken the decision without the due approval. 

The name of Ram Kumar, who became treasurer in a joint BCA (comprising Sharma and Siddiqui groups) election on September 23, 2015, was removed from the list of office-bearers published on the BCA website launched here on Saturday.

Kumar had contested the election as candidate of the group led by Abdul Bari Siddiqui, now the state finance minister.  

Some other office-bearers, like senior vice president Syed Mumtazuddin, who is now the vice chancellor of Veer Kunwar Singh University, Ara, too did not find place on the list posted on the website. 

The website showed Gopal Bohra as the president of BCA, following the disqualification of finance minister Abdul Bari Siddiqui in the wake of a Supreme Court order, as ministers cannot hold any post in the BCCI or state cricket associations. 

The BCA also enlisted a new name, that of Anand Kumar, as treasurer, replacing Ram Kumar. 

When asked about the omission, BCA secretary Singh said new office-bearers were nominated by the house at a meeting held on January 22. 

“We got approval from the BCCI to go ahead with the new set of office-bearers”, he said. 

Ram Kumar, however, rubbished the claim and said no special general meeting was held to seek approval of the house for the new set of office-bearers. 

He said at a meeting held prior to January 22, it was decided that each office-bearer would send an affidavit to BCCI CEO Rahul Johri and to the Lodha panel, declaring that the post held by respective persons did not violate the Lodha panel recommendations. 

“I have submitted my affidavit to the BCA secretary for further action,” Kumar said. 

Kumar, who works with the State Bank of India, said his removal was a deliberate attempt by the present secretary to dislodge elected representatives belonging to the Siddiqui group, from BCA functioning. “The secretary is himself holding two other posts - president of Arwal District Cricket Association (ADCA) and vice-president of Patna District Cricket Association (PDCA),” he added. 

He said Singh has been holding posts in the BCA committee of management since 2008. “He should have a cooling off period as per the Lodha recommendations”, he added.