Vengsarkar, Amre asked conflict of interest query

Dilip Vengsarkar and Praveen Amre, the former Test cricketers and current Mumbai Cricket Association managing committee members, have been asked to reply on conflict of interest allegations against them filed by Nadim Menon, a former curator and managing committee member.

Dilip Vengsarkar (left) and Praveen Amre (right) are members of the Mumbai Cricket Association.   -  PTI

Retired Justice Ajit Shah, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) ombudsman, has sought a reply from Dilip Vengsarkar and Praveen Amre, the former Test cricketers who are now Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) managing committee members, following a complaint alleging the duo of conflict of interest. Both Vengsarkar and Amre have been asked to submit a reply to Justice Shah by June 1.

The complaint has been filed by Nadim Memon, a former MCA curator and managing committee member. While Vengsarkar is the MCA vice-president at present, Amre is a managing committee member. Despite their honorary, posts, Memon’s complaint, accessed by Sportstar, elaborates on the duo’s roles with the BCCI and an Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise in conflict with the BCCI rules.

Vengsarkar was appointed as the director of the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in November last year. Though the NCA director is a paid post, in order to avoid conflict of interest, the appointment was on an honorary basis.

Amre, on the other hand, has been associated with the Delhi Daredevils team as assistant coach since the 2015 edition. The association has continued even after the former batsman was elected as an MCA managing committee member last year. Besides, he is employed by Air India, the national carrier.

Memon’s complaint draws attention to the fact that both the retired cricketers run private academies besides donning multiple hats.

'Baffling'

“I would like to bring to your notice that Vengsarkar runs a cricket academy for junior cricketers in Mumbai and Pune. It baffles me that how it is not a conflict of interest despite Vengsarkar not making any financial gains from his post as NCA Director. Although Vengsarkar has agreed to do the NCA job honorary, it would (be) dangerous to ignore the conflict of interest,” states Memon.

“The former India skipper can very well favour boys from his academy at the NCA. There is no guarantee that Vengsarkar wouldn’t be tilted towards Mumbai players.”

The office of the BCCI ombudsman confirmed that both the cricketers have been asked to reply to the allegations by June 1. While Vengsarkar and Amre declined to comment, Memon stressed he doesn’t have a personal vendetta against either of the cricketers.

“I have immense respect for both Mr. Vengsarkar and Mr. Amre as cricketers. We have worked together for years,” Memon told Sportstar. “My complaint is to expose the former cricketers exploiting the system for personal gains.”

It would be interesting to see Justice Shah’s response to the allegation against Vengsarkar. Amre, however, appears to be in a soup for multiple reasons.

While the BCCI conflict of interest guidelines specify that an “administrator” which includes managing committee members of its affiliated units, “shall not have any commercial interest in IPL” and “shall not be on the payroll of an IPL franchise”.

Besides, in a recent judgement against former India batsman Amay Khurasiya on simultaneously working as the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association academy director and running a private academy, Justice Shah had clarified all former cricketers need to take no objection certificates before accepting a coaching role.

“The ombudsman is of the view that the procedure for obtaining an NOC from the government department/PSU (Public Sector Undertaking) should be followed in all cases where the person/cricketer is to be appointed in any official capacity such as a coach or selector, given that a government servant is not supposed to hold any outside office without requisite permission from the government,” states the judgement.

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