Niranjan Shah, the former secretary of Indian cricket board, is in trouble for violating anti-corruption protocols. The anti-corruption unit of the BCCI has sent in a written complaint to the board that Shah has breached anti-corruption protocol by entering the Saurashtra dressing room during the Ranji final. The ACU has submitted a report with a photograph as evidence to their case.
The incident took place on the opening day of Ranji Trophy final at the VCA Stadium in Nagpur where Shah, a former Saurashtra Cricket Association secretary and currently a member, tried to enter the dressing room. He is said to have had an heated argument with anti-corruption unit officers. Shah wanted to meet Saurashtra players in dressing room but ACU were reluctant. As per anti-corruption unit guidelines only players and match officials are authorized to go to the dressing room during any first class or international matches.
Shah confirmed he went to dressing room as he hadn’t met his team for three weeks. “Imagine if this game was in Rajkot, will you not allow a secretary or president of Saurashtra Cricket association to enter dressing room? I was polite, I requested but they (ACU) didn’t listen to me. So I decided to go and meet my boys. I came back after few minutes, was this any crime? I told them (ACU) if you want, you can stand beside me and hear what am talking to them but they didn’t buy my argument,” Shah explained.
“Yes, I went during the course of the game, but I had asked for a temporary pass which allows a person who doesn’t have any card to enter the dressing room. I even said, I will be there only for few minutes and if ACU want they can send their officer with me,” Shah told The Indian Express.
Shah recalled an incident how Rahul Gandhi was allowed to meet Sachin Tendulkar during his retirement -200th Test match in Wankhede and ACU had provided a temporary pass to the politician. Shah a veteran administrator said there is provision where the ACU can issue a temporary pass for person who can enter the area. Shah later informed about the incident to BCCI CEO Rahul Johri. Shah says if BCCI will seek his explanation, he is ready to give his side of the story.
The Indian board had introduced ACU wing for its domestic cricket post IPL spot fixing scandal in order to prevent unwanted elements in their domestic cricket. ACU was short staffed for many years and only a few months ago the board had appointed two officers for each zone.