Supreme Court slams show cause notice on the BCCI office bearers

Supreme Court slams show cause notice on the BCCI office bearers

The CoA urged the three-member bench for the elimination of acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary, treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry and acting president CK Khanna.

CK Khanna BCCI
BCCI acting president CK Khanna. (Photo Source; Twitter)

President CK Khanna, secretary Amitabh Choudhary and treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry have been issued a show cause notice by the Supreme Court on Wednesday, August 23. The notice asks the dignitaries of the BCCI to personally appear on September 19th and explain their part to the Committee of Administrators (CoA) in preparing the draft constitution. The CoA also complained to the Supreme Court that the BCCI has not implemented a single recommendation of the RM Justice Lodha Panel till date.

Details:

The hearing on the latest status report submitted by the CoA on BCCI’s functioning was scheduled to take place last week, but it was postponed to Wednesday (August 23).

In its fifth status report submitted to the Supreme Court, the Committee of Administrators harshly criticized the BCCI. The CoA had asked for the termination of the present office bearers of the board for not obeying the court’s orders to implement the Lodha reforms. Considering the court’s order dated January 2, that led to the firing of Anurag Thakur and Ajay Shirke from their respective positions with the BCCI, the CoA urged the three-member bench for the elimination of acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary, treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry and acting president CK Khanna.

The CoA had also pointed out that when a working committee is absent,  the administrators should have been given the authority to manage the board’s affairs instead of the office bearers. The CoA had also accused the office bearers of putting restrictions on the role of board CEO Rahul Johri.

Rahul Johri was wittingly kept away from attending the Special General Meeting (SGM) held on July 26 this year, under intriguing circumstances claims the CoA. Choudhary had then observed that the Apex Court in its judgment dated July 24 had ruled only office-bearers with regard to state associations eligible to attend the SGM. Therefore, the board claimed to have been following the order of the Supreme Court “in letter and spirit”.

The ruling that was taken into account to prevent Rahul Johri from attending the SGM was related to CoA’s objection about the duo of N Srinivasan and Niranjan Shah attending the meetings of the BCCI. The apex court had stated on July 24 that BCCI meetings can only be attended by office bearers of the state associations.

In their fifth status report, CoA menyioned that the expulsion of the BCCI CEO was a well and pre-planned move by the board. The CoA also explained their statement and highlighted the ‘obvious’ motive behind the same.

“The motivations of such a clever manoeuvre are fairly obvious. The presence of the CEO in the previous SGM held on June 26, 2017 had enabled the Comittee of Administrators to receive first-hand account of the proceedings and bring conduct of certain specific individuals to the attention of this Hon’ble Court. The absence of CEO from the July 26 SGM would make (and has made) that task very difficult.”

The Special General Meeting held on July 26 saw the BCCI state a few things that needs to be reviewed: one state-one vote policy, the number of members in selection committees (which had been reduced to three from five), the concept of associate membership, the segregation in relation to functions executed by office bearers and paid professionals, disqualifications or restrictions on office-bearers in terms of age cap, tenure, cooling-off period and the formation of Apex Council.

The three-member SC bench comprising Justices Deepak Misra, AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud had agreed to reassess some of the Lodha recommendations which it previously accepted.

The CoA had quoted Vinod Rai in its status report and said “the heart, kidney and lungs are being taken out of these reforms” in relation to the board observing that the crux of the reforms approved by the Supreme Court was “impracticable.”