SC pulls up BCCI for behaving like 'Lords'

Lodha panel moved SC seeking removal of BCCI top brass including Anurag Thakur for non-compliance of SC orders.

Anurag Thakur, BCCI president , Justice Lodha Panel

Lodha commitee has sought a new panel of administrators to oversee the functioning of BCCI in place of Thakur & Co.   -  Ch. Vijaya Bhaskar

The Supreme Court today pulled up the BCCI, asking it to "fall in line" after the Justice R.M. Lodha panel sought removal of the top brass of BCCI, including its president Anurag Thakur and secretary Ajay Shirke, for non-compliance of the Apex Court directions.

The >Lodha panel, in its status report filed before the apex court, had sought the replacement of top brass of the cricket body with cricket administrators. It recommended that the Apex Court "supersede the present Office Bearers of the BCCI with immediate effect and appoint in their place a Panel of Administrators of the BCCI to ensure the smooth transition from the old to the new system recommended by the Committee’’.

View (pdf file): >Lodha committee status report

It said the >BCCI and its office bearers were not complying with directions and repeatedly issued statements to undermine the authority of the Court and the members of the Lodha panel, which had recommended structural reforms in BCCI.

The counsel, appearing for the panel, said BCCI was not replying to emails and other communications sent to them and repeatedly defied the orders of the Court.

READ - >Lodha: 'BCCI got full opportunity to argue recommendations'

The bench headed by Chief Justice T.S. Thakur took note of the submissions and said these are serious allegations and BCCI has to follow the directions of the Court.

"If the BCCI thinks that they are law unto themselves, then they are wrong. They have to comply with the directions of the court," the bench, also comprising Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and D.Y. Chandrachud, said.

"You (BCCI) are behaving like Lords. Fall in line otherwise we will make you fall in line," the bench said, adding that, "BCCI is bringing the system to disrepute by not following the directions".

Senior advocate Arvind Datar, appearing for BCCI, said that they have complied with most of the directions and would gradually comply with the rest.

Read: >BCCI continues to defy SC order

To this, the bench said, "Law needs not to be defied. We are not happy about the things going on. We anticipated this approach from BCCI but this is not done. You will have to fall in line with the directions of the court."

The Cricket Association of Bihar also approached the Apex Court and said that the review petition pending before the Court should be taken up urgently. They said the review petition filed by the BCCI is still in defects with the registry and it is not pursuing it to be taken up for hearing.

The bench posted the matter for hearing on October 6.

The apex court on July 18, accepted major recommendations of the Lodha Committee on reforms in BCCI including a bar on ministers and civil servants and those above 70 from becoming its members but left it to Parliament to decide whether it should come under RTI and betting on the game should be legalised.

The bench also requested the three-member panel, also comprising former apex court judges Ashok Bhan and R V Raveendran to oversee the transition of administrative structure in BCCI which has to take place within six months.