State associations to CoA: ‘We are not under your jurisdiction’

Some full member associations of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have told the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) that the apex court’s order dated July 18, 2016 does not apply to the State associations.

Some full member associations of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have told the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) that the apex court’s order dated July 18, 2016 does not apply to the State associations. This is in response to the CoA advisory that sought details from the full members/State associations the details of its office bearers, managing committee, executive, governing body as the case may be by March 1, 2017. A template letter sent by a former BCCI president to his group also says, “The rights of members of the State associations under Article 19 (1) (c ) of the constitution of India continues to remain protected and that the BCCI has not adopted the Justice Lodha Committee recommendations.

Here is the template letter full member associations have been asked to copy and send to the CoA:

“At the very outset, we wish to draw to your attention that the mandate of the committee is primarily to ensure compliance of the Judgment and Order dated 18.7.2016 passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court, wherein the Supreme Court itself, has observed and given its finding that the Lodha committee recommendations as accepted by the Hon’ble Court, do not affect the composition of the state cricket associations and has thus further clarified that the rights of members of the State associations under Article 19 (1) (c ) of the constitution of India continues to remain protected.

Further the recommendations of the Justice Lodha Committee report have allegedly not yet been adopted by the BCCI, as contemplated by the COA. The COA may be aware of the fact that the state associations, being registered under various statutes, including this association which is registered under the [Please insert] have thus made separate applications in the Hon’ble Supreme Court to hear and decide the rights of the state associations and recall the orders of the Hon’ble Supreme Court, in view of the protection enjoyed by them under Article 19(1) (c ) and 19(1)(g) of the constitution of India.

Admittedly, the committee has apparently received some information and advice due to which it is facing a lack of clarity on the exact scope and extent of the disqualifications in terms of order dated 2nd, 3rd and 20th January, 2017. Under these circumstances, many Associations have filed applications for directions in the Hon’ble Supreme Court with a request that the main applications may be heard and decided at the earliest so that the legal position of the Justice Lodha Committee recommendations qua the state associations and their members rights guaranteed under Articles 19 (1) (c) and 19(1) (g) may be clarified and contrary directions recalled.

In any case, even the Orders passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court do not envisage any disqualifications on any other person/s associated with the state associations, save and except the office bearers of the association. Thus we hope the committee with undoubtedly appreciate that the declaration made by the committee in Point A of the communication, thrusting disqualifications on office bearers/ representatives/ nominees/ patrons/ advisors/ committee members/ council members of state/ member associations, cannot be accepted by our association and is without jurisdiction and not in furtherance of any orders of the Hon’ble Supreme Court. This association has appointed an interim committee, till the time fresh elections are held, comprising following members and is compliant with the orders of the Hon’ble Supreme Court and which is being communicated to the BCCI are as follows:

[Please insert ]

1. In reference to Point B of your communication regarding measures for good governance and transparency, we have already created our website and we shall add the information suggested in the communication on the said website within next few weeks, and also subject to the Supreme Court orders in our application.

3. In reference to Point C of your communication regarding compliance with orders dated 7th October 2016 and 21st October 2016 passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court, we state that we have not received any grants / disbursements from the BCCI post October 2016. Even the share of media rights amounting to approx Rs. 16 crores received from BCCI has been kept in a fixed deposit, as directed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court, in a nationalised bank and the principle amount and the interest thereon is not touched by the association. In fact the amounts belong to this association and not to the BCCI and deserve to be released at the earliest for which a prayer has already been made before the Hon’ble Supreme Court. Non release of the money is adversely affecting the cricketing operations of the organization and the development of the ame of cricket in the state of [Please insert].

4. In reference to Point D of your communication regarding compliance with the directives issued by the Justice Lodha Committee, we state that the issue is before the Hon’ble Supreme Court and the Hon’ble Court has passed orders from time to time and lastly on 24th January, 2017. We reiterate at the risk of repetition that the recommendations of the Justice Lodha Committee report as contemplated by the COA are not adopted by BCCI as yet as per the procedure laid down in their Constitution.

5. Needless to state that we will await further directions/orders in this matter from the Hon’ble Supreme Court in this regard. This communication is without prejudice to all our rights and contentions in law. You may also note that the jurisdiction of the Committee of Administrators does not extend to the constituent units of the BCCI i.e. the State Associations.