Madhya Pradesh cricket member files complaint with the BCCI ombudsman
Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman
It’s not just Sourav Ganguly, who is facing the conflict of interest wrath for his association with Delhi Capitals while holding his post of president at the Cricket Association of Bengal and being a part of the Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC). India batting greats Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman have also been dragged into the conflict of interest sphere now.
Sanjeev Gupta, a life member of the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association [MPCA], has filed a complaint with the BCCI’s ombudsman and ethics officer Justice DK Jain on April 17, pointing out that Tendulkar and Laxman too are in violation of the BCCI’s conflict of interest rules as they are a part of the BCCI’s CAC and are also involved with the IPL teams, sitting often in the team dugouts during matches.
Gupta has also filed an exhaustive complaint against Ganguly, alleging that the former India captain is in violation of the conflict rules on various counts. Justice Jain is already dealing with Ganguly’s case after a complaint was filed by three cricket lovers from Kolkata.
Indian cricket greats VVS Laxman (left) and Sachin Tendulkar during the launch of Laxman’s autobiography in Mumbai last year
Breach of Rule 38
Gupta in his email to Justice Jain said that Tendulkar and Laxman are in breach of Rule 38 of the BCCI constitution. In two separate emails to Justice Jain, Gupta has stated that Tendulkar and Laxman are holding more than one post at a time which is in violation of the BCCI constitution.
Tendulkar is the Icon of Mumbai Indians, while Laxman is Sunrisers Hyderabad’s team mentor. Ganguly is Delhi Capitals’ team advisor. All three greats are also a part of the BCCI’s CAC, which is an honorary position. Ganguly, Tendulkar and Laxman were part of the committee that picked Anil Kumble and Ravi Shastri as India’s chief coach. It must be said that they merely responded to the invitation to serve Indian cricket while being on the committee. Also, the committee was a brainchild for departed former BCCI chief Jagmohan Dalmiya.
Gupta highlighted BCCI Rule 24 (5) which states: “The Head Coach of the National teams shall be appointed by the Cricket Advisory Committee referred in Rule 26 (2) (A) (ii).”
As per Rule 26 (2) (A) (ii), “The Men’s Selection Committee shall consist of five persons to be appointed by a Cricket Advisory Committee comprising of reputed former international Cricketers identified by the BCCI at the Annual General Meeting, subject to the following criteria.”
Gupta said: “With the said two rules, it is very clear that Cricket Advisory Committee is [the] most powerful Cricket Committee with ultimate power to appoint national teams head coaches and men’s selection committee.”
Gupta alleged that Tendulkar is in violation of conflict of interest Rule 38 (4) (b) [member of CAC] and (j) [any person who is in governance, management or employment of a franchisee] for holding more than one post at a time.
In Laxman’s case, Gupta has alleged that the Hyderabad batsman has violated conflict of interest rule 38 (4) (b) [member of CAC], (d) [TV commentator] and (j) [any person who is in governance, management or employment of a franchisee].
In Ganguly’s case, Gupta alleged that he has violated conflict of interest rule 38 (4) (b) [member of CAC], (d) [TV commentator], (f) [Administrator/Officer-bearer] (j) [any person who is in governance, management or employment of a franchisee], (m) [Office-bearer of a Member].
“Nobody can evade by blatantly violating the Lodha reforms/Honorable Supreme Court verdict and BCCI constitution rule 38 on the plea of being ‘advisor’ and ‘honorary’. In rule 38 (4) there are many posts which are honorary [but] that does not mean that those post holders can hold more than one post at a time on plea of being ‘honorary’,” Gupta wrote.
To emphasise on the ‘one-man, one-post’, Gupta also enclosed the Supreme Court order dated March 28, 2014 regarding the appointment of Sunil Gavaskar as BCCI’s interim president for the IPL wherein he was not allowed to do commentary for the said period.