Thakur: 'With BCCI sidelined, there can be no future for cricket'

"We have to protect India’s rights and no one is above it. With us sidelined, there can be no future or progress for world cricket," said BCCI president Anurag Thakur, critcising the ICC.

bcci, anurag thakur, lodha, icc, ipl

BCCI president Anurag Thakur addresses a press conference in New Delhi.   -  PTI

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) seems to be in no mood to cede to the Supreme Court as it insisted on having the Annual General Meeting (AGM) on September 21; invited applications for IPL broadcasting rights and termed the court orders as “interference”.

“The AGM is a routine process of the BCCI and is only three days away, so just wait and we will see what business of the BCCI can be conducted or resolutions adopted,” said president Anurag Thakur when asked whether any decision other than those concerning activities of the past year would be valid.

The BCCI has filed a review petition in the Supreme Court against the ruling that asked the Board to implement reforms in line with the Lodha panel recommendations. It has also sought the recusal of chief justice T. S. Thakur from the bench.

“Let us leave it to the court whether our action is in the interest of cricket. The institution is most important for me. The BCCI has not taken a single penny from the central or state government."

"We have built the infrastructure for spreading cricket in the country, we have brought cricket to this level. Reforms is a continuous process. It can’t mean stopping work because of a petition in the court. The situation now is that it is interference in a way (from the judiciary),” Thakur said.

Thakur refused to comment whether the Board would be in contempt of court in case it goes ahead with its activities without implementing the reforms.

He even invited the Justice Lodha and his team to “come and see the amount of work BCCI does, how it has grown over a period of time with a lot of transparency and accountability” in the upcoming domestic season since the panel “has been unable to visit the state associations and the BCCI headquarters and has met only in five-star hotels.”

The BCCI president also took potshots at his predecessor and current ICC Chairman Shashank Manohar, saying, “those who wanted to go to ICC have already done that” when asked about his plans of moving to the international body. “We have to protect India’s rights and no one is above it. With us sidelined, there can be no future or progress for world cricket.

“When all the money and power in cricket comes from a country and that country is not part of the financial committee where budgetary decisions are passed. All we asked for was to run through the details because the money belongs to all 105 countries.

"That’s why the BCCI plays the global leader’s role. If the BCCI can cut event costs and be successful in hosting tournaments, then the ICC and other organizations also need to look into doing that,” added.