BCCI acting secy takes issue with CoA’s decision

Amitabh Choudhary said the CoA has acted in ‘most cavalier manner’ in panel appointment.

Choudhary says, “the actions of the COA did not inspire confidence, beginning with the fact that it took upon itself the task of adjudicating the (Rahul Johri) matter.”   -  PTI

Ever since sexual misdemeanour allegations were made against BCCI CEO Rahul Johri by an unknown individual on Twitter, long-standing BCCI officials have wondered why an internal committee was not asked to investigate the allegations.

The BCCI officials say the appointment of an internal committee “would have been the correct process” and hence were surprised by Thursday’s communication by the Committee of Administrators (CoA) that an independent committee had been formed to investigate the matter and given 15 days to revert with findings and propose action.

Acting BCCI secretary Amitabh Choudhary, on Saturday, told the CoA it had acted in a “most cavalier manner” on the issue; he pointed out that a statement was sent to the media on Thursday night (10.48 p.m.).

More significantly, Choudhary says, “the actions of the COA did not inspire confidence, beginning with the fact that it took upon itself the task of adjudicating the matter.”

Referring to former India captain Diana Edulji, Choudhary said one member of the CoA had been decisive saying that there was enough material warranting strict action against the CEO.

He adds: “The learned chairman (Vinod Rai), on the other hand, decided to have further inquiries. The media release says a committee comprising three persons will look into the matter without informing how the committee was constituted or who chose its members."

He further points out that given Edulji’s stance on the issue, she could not have had anything to do with the constitution of the committee.

READ| Seven state units write to CoA chief Rai demanding Johri's suspension

"The chairman had no authority to prevail over the views of other members and take unilateral decisions, on behalf of the CoA or the BCCI,” he stated.

Recalling the order of the Supreme Court, Choudhary says “the position of the chairman was only of first among equals and no additional or superior powers have been conferred upon him.

“In view of the clear divergence of views of the two CoA members, the only recourse available was to refer the issue to either the Supreme Court or to the general body.”

Choudhary also pointed out that two of the three members of the enquiry committee were above 70 years of age.

“A committee stricken with such infirmities from its inception is hardly expected to dispense any real justice and is bound to be seen with great suspicion,” he added.