Bedi: ‘Board of Uncontrollables in India’s cricket’

Former India captain Bishan Singh Bedi on Monday questioned the persistence resistance to cricket reforms by some of the Board officials.

Bishan Singh Bedi was appalled at the Board’s response to the entire process.   -  V. V. SUBRAHMANYAM

Former India captain Bishan Singh Bedi on Monday questioned the persistence resistance to cricket reforms by some of the Board officials.

“Who controls cricket in India? Is it the preserve of a select group of friends or is it a sport which represents a way of life for millions of Indians? Do cricketers play for BCCI or do they play for India?” Bedi asked.

Referring to the Supreme Court’s directive to the Board to implement the Lodha Committee Recommendations, Bedi said, “Over the last 18 months, I have been seeing the extent of resistance of a select band of merry makers in BCCI who did not want to be ‘disturbed’ from their enjoyment binge. These guys had perfected the election mantra. ‘Just get together a ramshackle group by offering position and perks to them. In fact, the current BCCI interim President has mastered the election process over the last 35 years.”

The former India captain was appalled at the Board’s response to the entire process. “Even after the Hon Supreme Court gave a clear judgement in the BCCI case, and incorporated almost all recommendations of Justice Lodha Committee, it was expected that it was all over for BCCI, bar the shouting. But, BCCI office bearers are made of sterner stuff. In fact, when the then CJI had given a patient hearing to all state units and had asked BCCI as to what their objections to Justice Lodha recommendations were, they came up with bizarre excuses to thwart the imposition of norms of transparency and integrity. “

Criticising the current set of Board office-bearers, Bedi observed, “One year has passed, yet the BCCI ex office bearers have adopted every trick in the book to hoodwink the Hon Supreme Court. Finally, it is a matter of utmost satisfaction that Supreme Court has now barred N Srinivasan, and Niranjan Shah from attending the BCCI’s SGM scheduled for July 26.”

Making a fervent appeal, Bedi said, “BCCI should not be given any window to revert to their specialized operation of ‘managing elections and perpetuating a cosy-club’.”

Bedi also raised the issue of the Board’s insignia. “Cricketers play for the country, and wish to play under the Indian insignia and, flag. Why should they wear apparel showing the BCCI logo and not the Indian Ashoka ‘stambh? Just look at any other country’s board. They do not write, Board for Control’- rather they call themselves as Cricket Australia, ECB, SLCB, WICB, etc.”

On a concluding note, Bedi requested the Supreme Court to, “Order a forensic audit of all state associations to see how money has been swindled by many office bearers.”

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