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BCCI secretary questions CoA’s functioning in scathing letter to General Manager Saba Karim

In the letter, accessed by Hindustan Times, the secretary has primarily asked two questions. Firstly he has asked how exactly did the leak happen in the Mithali Raj letter episode and secondly he wants to know who was behind the mid-season player transfer rule

cricket Updated: Dec 07, 2018 18:57 IST
Baidurjo Bhose
Baidurjo Bhose
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
BCCI,Saba Karim,Mithali Raj
A view of logo of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) during a Council meeting of the Indian Premier League (IPL) at BCCI headquarters on July 19, 2015 in Mumbai, India.(Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary has written a scathing mail to GM Cricket Operations Saba Karim regarding not only cricketing decisions being taken in recent times, but has also questioned how exactly the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators is functioning considering that one member of the committee — Diana Edulji — is unaware of most moves made by the CoA chief Vinod Rai.

In the letter, accessed by Hindustan Times, the secretary has primarily asked two questions. Firstly he has asked how exactly did the leak happen in the Mithali Raj letter episode and secondly he wants to know who was behind the mid-season player transfer rule change that happened mid-way into the 2018-19 domestic season.

“How was the report of Ms Mithali Raj leaked? Who is the author of the unauthorized, unprecedented, mid-season above referred change of rule?” he enquired.

Coming down heavily on the recent functioning of the CoA, Amitabh wrote: “It is now part of the BCCI records that while the views of the only other member of the CoA, so half the CoA-if that need be said, having far better credentials in the game than any of us in the BCCI, have been repeatedly ignored, confidential mails received by only a few orchestrated to be leaked just to bring discomfort to her in the public eye.

ALSO READ: BCCI secretary sends reminder to CEO Rahul Johri & Saba Karim, wants report on leak of Mithali Raj’s letter to media

“Considering the sensitivity of the whole issue, specially the fact that a member of the CoA was concerned, I had immediately asked for a report from the concerned officials, but to no avail.”

Amitabh also spoke about the difference in opinion between the CoA members with regards to the formation of the independent committee to probe the allegations of sexual harassment against CEO Rahul Johri.

“The recent composition of the so called independent committee by just one individual with disagreement demonstrated even about its formation, the manner of its deliberations, the refusal of half of CoA to accept its recommendations establish beyond reasonable doubt that unfettered and wanton exercise of power without responsibility or accountability has not only taken hold at the BCCI, but has now become its hallmark,” he wrote.

Coming back to the board’s decision to change the player transfer rule regarding wards of government employees, Amitabh said that it was unwarranted and something that could well have been avoided mid-season.

ALSO READ: Harmanpreet says decision to drop Mithali Raj was unanimous in letter to BCCI, backs Powar to continue as coach

“As my modest mind understands, the change of rule was unauthorized and unconstitutional. That was so because it had no sanction from the Technical Committee, Tournament Committee, Apex Council or the General Body. That it is not even clear as to who is its author. That, considering it was mid-season, it was unprecedented in cricket history.

“That there is absolutely no merit in singling out government servants for any benefits because service conditions with regard to transfers remain the same for all categories of employees anywhere. Besides, all citizens are free to choose their employer/place of employment. That it is absurd even to suggest that Ranji Trophy players are not professional players, and therefore, cannot obviously be considered dependent wards,” he wrote.

Amitabh even pointed at treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry pointing at the similar issue recently when he wrote to the board officials about this sudden change of rule. Anirudh wrote as recently as November 26, bringing to light two cases — Bihar-born Pratyush Singh and Kutub Uddin Chowdhury — that he felt needed a look under the newly framed policy.

The treasurer pointed at how one of Pratyush’s brother was still plying his trade for Jharkhand as also while his father’s transfer was from Delhi to Tripura, the player shifted from Jharkhand to Tripura. Also, in Kutub’s case, he enquired that if the father was employed with New India Assurance Co. Ltd. and positioned in Chanmari, Aizwal since 1989, why did the need for a mid-season transfer arise?

Amitabh echoed the sentiments and said: “As a convention/principle any rule or change of rule, particularly one carried out with such urgency, must be accompanied by general good and not designed to benefit a miniscule TWO in a massive set of over ONE THOUSAND ONE HUNDRED (supposing 37 Ranji teams with a short list of 30 each). Admittedly, there are only TWO beneficiaries.”

First Published: Dec 07, 2018 18:51 IST