Speaking as BCCI president-elect on Monday morning, Sourav Ganguly expressed surprise at the way in which the responsibility had come to him.
“I didn’t know I would be the president when I came down. You (reporters) asked me and I told you it’s (former India middle-order batsman) Brijesh (Patel) and when I went up and I came to know it has changed. I have never been in a BCCI election and I never knew it worked like this,” PTI quoted him as saying.
Members of the Indian cricket board had on Sunday unanimously nominated the former India captain to the post. Monday is the last day to file nominations for posts of officebearers ahead of the Annual General Meeting (AGM) scheduled for October 23.
Who are BCCI’s office-bearers?
The BCCI’s five office-bearers are the President, Vice-President, Secretary, Joint Secretary, and Treasurer. According to the Memorandum of Association and Rules and Regulations of the BCCI, they are elected by the Full Members of the Board from among their representatives at the AGM.
The BCCI’s Full Members are the associations who are the controlling bodies for cricket in 29 Indian states and the Union Territory of Delhi. Each state (and Delhi) is a single Full Member, with the exceptions of Gujarat and Maharashtra, which have three Full Members each — Baroda Cricket Association, Gujarat Cricket Association, and Saurashtra Cricket Association in Gujarat, and Maharashtra Cricket Association, Mumbai Cricket Association, and Vidarbha Cricket Association in Maharashtra.
The Indian Railways, Armed Forces/Services, and the Association of Indian Universities have a vote each at the BCCI’s AGM. The BCCI also has some Associate Members, who do not have the right to vote.
The elections are generally a formality. The loyalties of members are well known, and even where there is a contest, the outcome is often all but decided beforehand.
What is the role of the BCCI president?
As per the “powers and duties of officebearers” in the BCCI’s Memorandum of Association and Rules and Regulations, the president presides at the meetings of the general body and the apex council, and is one of the three persons who sign the audited annual accounts and other financial statements of the BCCI, the world’s richest cricket board.
The president of the BCCI is the country’s most powerful cricket official, and the post the most prestigious among sports bodies in the country. It has long been dominated by politicians, businessmen and erstwhile royalty. Given the turmoil in Indian cricket administration, there has been some instability at the top in recent years: Shashank Manohar, who became president after Jagmohan Dalmiya died in office in 2015, resigned in 2016, and his successor, Anurag Thakur, was removed from the post in 2017. C K Khanna has been the interim president ever since.
What is the president’s term of office?
All BCCI office-bearers’ posts are honorary. According to the Memorandum of Association and Rules and Regulations, “the term of office of an office bearer shall be three years”, and “no person shall be an office-bearer for more than three terms in all”. Again, “an office-bearer who has held any post for two consecutive terms either in a state association or in the BCCI (or a combination of both) shall not be eligible to contest any further election without completing a cooling-off period of three years”.
Sourav Ganguly was last month elected president of the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) for a second term. He had been elected president for the first time in 2015 after Dalmiya passed away. Before that, he became joint secretary of the CAB in 2014. He will, thus complete six years as an office-bearer in July 2020.
Asked about the shorter term, Ganguly said: “Yes, that’s the rule and we will deal with it.”