Controversy hits IPL 2017 auction as CoA bars BCCI strongmen from attending

The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) has barred CK Khanna, Amitabh Choudhary and Anirudh Chaudhry from attending the IPL auction.

cricket Updated: Feb 19, 2017 21:00 IST
Somshuvra Laha
Somshuvra Laha
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
IPL 2017 auction,Indian Premier League,CK Khanna
The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) has barred other ex-officio members of the IPL governing council from attending IPL 2017 auction.(PTI)

The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA), headed by former CAG Vinod Rai, has barred CK Khanna, Amitabh Choudhary and Anirudh Chaudhry from attending the IPL auction on Monday. The decision was announced through a media release on Sunday.

The panel has also barred any other ex-officio member of the IPL governing council on account of being office-bearers of the BCCI. Khanna is the senior-most vice-president of the BCCI, who was tipped to be interim BCCI president while the Lodha Committee reforms were being implemented by the state associations.

But Choudhury (acting BCCI joint-secretary) and Chaudhry’s (acting BCCI treasurer) omission is significant in the context of the ICC meeting in Dubai earlier this month. Both are trusted men of N Srinivasan, who as ICC chief had formed the ‘Big Three’ model that allowed India pocket the biggest share of the revenue. But the BCCI’s share was slashed in a meeting where current ICC chief Shashank Manohar rallied all the nations, barring Sri Lanka, to either vote against India or abstain.

It didn’t go down well with the BCCI officials forced out after the Lodha Committee reforms were implemented. The BCCI had always boasted how the IPL, its proverbial cash cow, can be milked to survive any financial blow. The IPL was its biggest trump card.

They were even on the verge of planning a mini IPL last year in place of the loss-making Champions League Twenty20. But the CoA’s decision to bar Choudhury and Chaudhry from the IPL auction means that the erstwhile BCCI top bosses have lost control over their biggest money-churner.

The IPL governing council had four members --- chairman Rajeev Shukla, Jyotiraditya Scindia, MP Pandove and Sourav Ganguly. All except Ganguly have quit their roles in the BCCI or at their respective state associations.

Given how Ganguly’s name was dragged into an alleged conflict of interest regarding the Sanjiv Goenka-owned Rising Pune Supergiants (he also owns ISL franchise Atletico de Kolkata where Ganguly is co-owner), it remains to be seen whether he will attend the auction.

Perhaps anticipating this, the CoA has also created a provision for other people to fill in at the auction if required. “In the event less than two of the members are available to attend the IPL player auctions on 20th February 2017, any role that may ordinarily have been performed by the IPL GC in relation to the IPL player auctions will be performed by such persons as the Committee of Administrators may separately designate for the purpose, if required,” the CoA said in the release.

According to sources, BCCI CEO Rahul Johri will be present in Bengaluru on Monday, while Hemang Amin, the BCCI official in charge of the IPL, will monitor the auction that will probably be devoid of any BCCI top boss for the first time in the IPL’s 10-year history.

First Published: Feb 19, 2017 19:22 IST