Journalist Rajat Sharma elected new DDCA boss

Sharma got a total of 1531 votes while former Test cricketer Madan Lal could only poll 1004 votes.

Rajat Sharma was always considered as the favourite to win against Lal, who was backed by CK Khanna and former India opener Chetan Chauhan’s group.   -  Twitter

Acting BCCI president C.K. Khanna suffered a major setback when the panel backed by him and led by former India cricketer Madan Lal was swept away in the Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA) elections on Monday.

The results of the four-day elections held last week saw journalist Rajat Sharma elected as the new president, winning with 1531 votes against 1004 for Lal. Advocate Vikas Singh came a distant third with 232 votes.

The Rajat Sharma-panel swept the elections 12-0 amidst noisy scenes and jubilation from the winners even as Lal and his supporters alleged discrepancies in voting and counting but accepted the decision.

Khanna’s wife Shashi, contesting for the vice-president’s post, lost to Rakesh Bansal, younger brother of former DDCA president Sneh Bansal by 278 votes in an election that was the first by a State association since the Justice Lodha committee suggested reforms. It was also the first time that the much-abused proxy system of voting was abolished during the DDCA elections with nearly 3000 members turning up for voting.

Sharma’s panel was also supported by IOA president Narinder Batra who, incidentally is a former DDCA treasurer.

Transparency assured

“I see it as a victory of the democratic system and that of direct voting. We want to give better facilities and respect to the DDCA members and Delhi cricketers. To players, I want to assure that there will be absolute transparency in selections on merit and no favouritism,” Sharma said after taking charge from the court-appointed administrator Justice (retd) Vikramjit Sen.

However, the last decision by Justice Sen — bringing DDCA under the purview of RTI, the first cricket body in the country to do so — may well be the first to be done away with by the new body even though Sharma remained evasive on the topic.

“We are an open book and open to all questions from any quarters,” he insisted but when asked categorically about RTI, he made it a collective decision. “Let me discuss it with the other members. We will have our first meeting of the executive committee and then take a final decision,” he said.

Asked about implementing Lodha reforms in toto, Sharma was equally non-committal. “There are a lot of good suggestions there and we will try and implement as much as possible. If something doesn’t feel right, we will discuss it,” he said.

The office-bearers: President: Rajat Sharma; vice-president: Rakesh Kumar Bansal; secretary: Vinod Tihara; joint secretary: Rajan Manchanda; treasurer: Om Prakash Sharma; cricket director: Sanjay Bhardwaj; woman director: Renu Khanna; directors: Apurv Jain, Alok Mittal, Nitin Gupta, Shiv Nandan Sharma and Nitin Agarwal.

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