On Saturday, the BCCI ombudsman DK Jain received two complaints that Sourav Ganguly is conflicted in his role as Delhi Capitals advisor, while serving as the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) president.
Particularly, Ganguly’s involvement in the Kolkata Knight Riders versus Delhi Capitals game on April 12 at Eden Gardens has been put under the scanner. Ranjit Kr. Seal and Bhaswati Santua, two Bengal residents, have separately sent their complaints to Justice (Retd) Jain.
“I would also like to draw your kind attention that on 12th April, 2019 (inadvertently quoted 12th May, 2019 in my earlier e-mail), Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Delhi Capital (sic) Match will be played at Eden Gardens, Kolkata. KKR is the local franchisee, who are (sic) closely associated with the Cricket Association of Bengal, more so, Sri Sourav Ganguly is the President of CAB.
“On the other hand, Sri Sourav Ganguly, is an Advisor of Delhi Capital (sic). Sir, is it practically possible – in one hand CAB President is supporting in all aspects to the local franchisee to conduct the match administratively and in another way, CAB President is sitting with the team officials of Delhi Capitals as an Advisor. Sir, will it not attract any conflict of interest,” Seal wrote in his letter accessed by The Sunday Express.
Santua, on the other hand, stated: “KKR is the local franchisee (sic), and all the home matches are being held with the active administrative support of the Cricket Association of Bengal, where Sri Sourav Ganguly is the President…”
Both have urged the BCCI ombudsman, who is also the cricket board’s ad-hoc ethics officer, “to intervene into the matter immediately” to “protect” the spirit of the Supreme Court order on Lodha reforms.
On March 14, the rechristened Delhi IPL franchise roped in Ganguly as their team advisor for the ongoing edition of the T20 league. “No, this is not conflict. I have stepped down from all the committees; the BCCI technical committee and the IPL technical committee. I have followed the rules. I don’t see any conflict, because as the CAB president I don’t influence anything concerned to the IPL. This is also an advisory role, Ricky Ponting is the head, and it’s an honorary role,” the former India captain had said, as he spoke to this paper. Ganguly couldn’t be contacted today. Like the previous matches, he sat in the Delhi Capitals’ dug-out for their game against KKR at Feroz Shah Kotla.
Delhi Capitals CEO Dhiraj Malhotra had said the ex-India skipper had the CoA’s go-ahead. “Sourav has already taken the approval from the CoA. It was only after he received all clearances from the BCCI he agreed to be the advisor with us. He was in the technical committee of the IPL which he has resigned from. So there’s no conflict at all. We have tried to make a lot of changes (this season) to make sure that we are a more dynamic team.”
It would be interesting to see if Ganguly turns up as the team advisor or the CAB president, when Delhi Capitals will play on his ‘home’ patch on April 12. “On the face of it, this is potential conflict of interest,” a former CAB official said.
Meanwhile, with regards to conflict of interest, Clause 38. (1) (i) of the new BCCI constitution says: “Direct or Indirect Interest: When the BCCI, a Member, the IPL or a Franchise enter into contractual agreements with entities in which the individual concerned or his/her relative , partner or close associate has an interest.