After a continual show of defiance to mandatory recommendations of the Lodha committee, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has been asked to place before the Lodha committee minutes of the two meetings that took place at the Cricket Centre here on September 30 and October 1, 2016.
Secretary to the Justice Lodha Committee, advocate Gopal Sankaranarayanan, has addressed a mail to the BCCI president Anurag Thakur, secretary Ajay Shirke, treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry and CEO Rahul Johri and asked them to submit them by morning of Wednesday, October 5.
While the BCCI convened the Emergent Special General Meeting (ESGM) on September 30 "to consider directions of Justice (Retd) Lodha Committee in connection with the formal adoption of the new Memorandum of Association and rules for the BCCI", the BCCI president also convened a impromptu Emergent Working Committee (EWC) meeting. This was done to announce substantial increase in the one-off infrastructural subsidy (Rs. 60 crore to Rs. 70 crore), disbursement of the BCCI’s balance share (Rs. 19 crore) of the compensation to the State associations and increase the Test match fees (from Rs. 7 lakh to Rs. 15 lakh).
The BCCI had also adjourned the ESGM to October 1 citing technical glitches.
Writing on behalf of the Supreme Court appointed committee, Sankaranarayanan has concluded the mail saying: "Please send the minutes of the EGM/SGM dated 30.9.2016 & 1.10.2016 and the Emergent Working Committee meeting dated 30.9.2016 by tomorrow morning."
At the outset, the Justice Lodha Committee has apportioned the blame on the BCCI office bearers for misinterpreting directions and contents of the advisory sent to the BCCI and its official bankers, Maharashtra Bank and Yes Bank .
"It is unfortunate that the directions/contents of the e-mail have been misinterpreted, as is evident from the press reports to state that the present India-New Zealand series is at stake.
"The Supreme Court Committee has not frozen the bank accounts of BCCI. Nor has it objected to the banking operations/payments relating to routine administration and conduct of cricket matches/tournaments/activities. This has been clarified in express terms to the banks concerned, so that cricket and the public are not made to pay for the actions of the BCCI governors."
The Lodha Committee has further said that it has only expressed its objections to the decisions taken at the Emergent Working Committee meeting and in relation to disburse large funds to the various member associations "under the guise of increasing the annual infrastructure subsidy and to divide the proceeds of the Champions League compensation".
"We understand that these may run into figures of more than Rs.500 crore. Such decisions were neither routine nor emergent," the committee said.
The committee has also taken note of the BCCI president Thakur’s observation that the BCCI will have to either abandon the plans to host the 10th edition of the IPL or pull the Indian team out of the Champions Trophy to be held in England in June 2017 in the event of the Lodha Committee recommendations being implemented.
Rebutting the BCCI president’s statement, the Lodha Committee has said: "The out-of-context statement by the president is misleading. While dealing with IPL, the report had merely suggested that while drawing up the cricket calendar for a year, a gap of 15 days may be provided after a strenuous IPL season before the commencement of events in the national calendar, to ensure that a cramped cricketing year does not take a toll on the cricketers’ body and longevity of their career. This does not in any way prevent some flexibility where the calendar has already been declared for 2017 when the Champions Trophy has already been scheduled."