Lodha reforms: State units convey reservations to amicus curiaehttps://indianexpress.com/article/sports/cricket/lodha-reforms-state-units-convey-reservations-to-amicus-curiae-5693261/

Lodha reforms: State units convey reservations to amicus curiae

Many members feels that the Committee of Administrators (CoA) has taken liberties while drafting the new BCCI constitution.

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The Supreme Court had asked the amicus curiae to act as mediator and have discussions with the state associations that had file interim applications with regards to the implementation of the Lodha reforms.

A nine-plus-nine tenure cap, amendments in the cooling-off clause and automatic membership to all former international players in state bodies were the major issues that the representatives of the state associations took before amicus curiae PS Narasimha during their meetings over the last few weeks. The Supreme Court had asked the amicus curiae to act as mediator and have discussions with the state associations that had file interim applications with regards to the implementation of the Lodha reforms. The next hearing in the BCCI matter is scheduled on Thursday.

On Wednesday, four north-eastern state associations, and also a few other state units, had meetings with the amicus curiae. Before that though, some BCCI members separately had met the senior advocate Narasimha last week.

“All of us have put the nine-plus-nine tenure cap across to him (Narasimha). I hope he would agree with this. Also, what we have sought to say with regards to the cooling-off is that it shouldn’t apply once a person has completed nine years in the state and he is going to the BCCI… He shouldn’t have any cooling-off immediately and he should be allowed two terms in the centre before the cooling-off starts applying,” an office-bearer of a South Zone state unit told this paper.

Another office-bearer of a state body spoke about how he mentioned to the amicus curiae that automatic membership to all former international players could change the institutional voting pattern of a state body. He also elaborated the difficulties about framing the state association constitution as a “mirror image” of the BCCI constitution. The amicus curiae will now file a report before the Supreme Court.

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Many members feels that the Committee of Administrators (CoA) has taken liberties while drafting the new BCCI constitution. With regards to the tenure cap for the office-bearers, the new BCCI constitution says it’s a cumulative period of nine years in the BCCI or a cumulative period of nine years in the state association. The apex court in its March 24, 2017 order, however, had said its direction in this regard was “as clear as a cloudless sky”. The BCCI members believe that the clear mandate of the Supreme Court on tenure is that an office-bearer can have nine years in the BCCI and another independent nine years in the state association.

“I think as far as the nine-plus-nine issue is concerned, already the Supreme Court had separately dealt with the matter and they had given certain verdict. I’m sure that those verdicts are also to be taken into consideration. I’m sure that since the matter is now being placed before the amicus curiae, those issues would be highlighted to,” the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) joint-secretary Avishek Dalmiya told The Indian Express.

Meanwhile, it is learnt that during today’s meeting with the amicus curiae, the ‘fully compliant’ north-eastern states like Meghalaya requested for the release of the BCCI funds. They also spoke about how in their case, the effects of the Lodha reforms should be prospective rather than retrospective, as they weren’t Full Members before the BCCI’s administrative shakeup.

Avishek supported their logic. “I think their demand for prospective effect is quite justified, especially in view of the fact that they were neither entitled to any vote earlier, or any grant for that matter, till the time they became Full Members.

“I think the spirit of Full Membership, as contained in the report given by Justice Lodha… the spirit here is that of a Full member and that can only be considered in its entirety only when one gets the voting right as well as the (BCCI) grant. Those are the privileges of a Full member. As far as the north-eastern states are concerned, till the time they got the Full Membership, they actually had to even recuse themselves at the time of the voting, whenever it happened in the Board.”