Resignation threats, questions by BCCI functionaries and Jaitley’s wisdom halt Srinivasan’s comeback bid.
It came as little surprise that the BCCI on Friday scrapped its working committee meeting, which was intended to pave way for N Srinivasan’s return as board president. The dissenting voices within the board had grown too loud, with two BCCI vice-presidents apparently threatening to resign if he presided over the meeting. But BCCI vice-president and union law minister, Arun Jaitley, intervened and the meeting was called off unanimously.
And as mentioned in this paper on Thursday, BCCI joint secretary Anurag Thakur and former board chief IS Bindra abstained from the meeting.
Although the official reason cited for cancelling the meeting was “technical” — the word ‘emergency’ must be mentioned if a working committee meeting is called abruptly — an insider told dna that Srinivasan was also warned of contempt of court, which declared BCCI’s internal probe panel as illegal.
According to another report, Srinivasan initially insisted that the high court’s orders were mere observations and not binding on the board. But the discomfort in the room was reportedly quite palpable, with IPL’s governing council members texting each other frantically about Srini’s presence.
Apparently, one governing council member, too, pointed out the lack of transparency in the BCCI’s procedure to appoint its inquiry panel. An intense argument apparently ensued and the meeting ended abruptly. The BCCI, meanwhile, has decided to move Supreme Court on Tuesday to challenge the HC. Jagmohan Dalmiya will continue to manage the board’s affairs in the interim.
BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel said, “As a matter of principle, the members confirmed that it was important that the governing council’s actions be and be seen to be both legally and ethically correct. The governing council believes that the probe commission was properly constituted in accordance with the IPL operational rules, and has consequently decided that an appeal should be filed in the Honourable Supreme Court.”
Once again Jaitley emerged as the key man who convinced Srinivasan to exercise prudence. It is learnt that Jaitley suggested that the only way Srinivasan could seek legal re-dress against the HC judgment was by not chairing Friday’s meeting. Else, Srinivasan should brace up for more litigation from across the country like the one bothering the board at this point.
The legal opinion was wisely taken into the account by Srinivasan, and it took less than 10 minutes for the BCCI mandarins to devise a strategy and maintain a status quo.
It is fair to say that Srini had no choice but heed Jaitley’s advice. And so for the second time in as many months, Jaitley had his way. Remember, it was Jaitley and Thakur who forced Srinivasan to “step aside” till the board’s internal panel completed its inquiry against his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan.
Dalmiya has emerged as the biggest winner, for he gets more time as interim chief.
Friday’s development is also a massive boost to Srinivasan’s detractors within the board, who are keen that his election prospects are stunted in September. That will ensure the floating votes — roughly five to six — would tilt in their favour.(dnaindia)