‘No more cheques, only online payments’ is the new mantra of the Indian cricket board. A day after three officials from Goa Cricket Association were arrested for alleged embezzlement of funds to the tune of over Rs 3 crore, the BCCI is set to issue fresh guidelines for payments done in each associations.
The Indian board will be sending notice to all its associations by Friday, informing their stake holders that all payments will be made only online. And that the accounts will be verified by the bank and statutory authority.
As per the complaint, Chetan Dessai, Phadke and Mulla had allegedly forged signatures and opened bank accounts to swindle TV rights money that the GCA received from the Indian cricket board in October 2006. According to a GCA insider, in April 2007, a bank account had been opened by “impersonating and posing” Phadke as president, Dessai as secretary and Mulla as treasurer. The account was closed in March 2008 after removing the entire amount (Rs 2.87 crore) by cash or bearer cheque.
It is learnt that decision of issuing new financial guidelines was taken by BCCI president Anurag Thakur and Ajay Shirke and board wants put their house in order.
Asked shouldn’t the board take stricter action on these members, a board official explained the rationale. “People might say BCCI should act now but we can’t go by allegations. Those officials were booked for fraud but these are allegations till date. Even the charge sheet has not been filed. You can’t call someone guilty until he has proven guilty under court of law. BCCI has taken certain step which we have sent to all associations and as far as action on these members are concern we will take it after taking consent of our members in the working committee,” a BCCI official said.
Meanwhile, Desai, who holds chairman’s post in boards marketing committee, is likely to be suspended during BCCI’s working committee to take place in Dharamsala whereas Phadke, who is member of board’s information technology and date management committee, might also be ousted.
The BCCI will be not suspending GCA but a committee is expected to be formed to monitor cricketing activities in the state.
The Goa Police acted on a complaint lodged by GCA life member Vilas Dessai last month. “The above noted accused persons who were the members and signatory authority for Goa Cricket Association hatched a criminal conspiracy by impersonating and posing as President, Secretary and Treasurer of Goa Cricket Association and further prepared forged, fake documents and resolution of Goa Cricket Association and submitted the same to Development Credit Bank, Panaji Branch, for opening an account in Development Credit Bank in the name of Goa Cricket Association and thereby misappropriated the funds of TV subsidy sent by Board of Control for Cricket in India to Goa Cricket Association, thereby cheating the association for tune of Rs 2.87 Crores.
“They also withdrew Rs 26 Lakhs from Federal Bank of Goa Cricket Association (account) on the non existing person’s name on the pretext of giving the money to a company namely HAKO enterprise, which was never given and thereby cheated Goa Cricket Association to the total tune of Rs 3.13 Crores,” said the complaint.
The complaint report also mentioned the alleged BCCI inaction. “That a life member of GCA, Shri Hemant Angle, had complaint (sic) about this fraud to the BCCI but no action was taken by BCCI even to investigate in (sic) the matter. This shows that how BCCI has supported the Committee members in such above mentioned fraud. Without the strong support of BCCI, the mother body of GCA, the office-bearers would not have dared to do such act of cheating,” it claimed.