S Sreesanth will not get any immediate relief from the BCCI after the board decided to appeal to the Division Bench of Kerala High Court against lifting of life ban on the tainted pacer, PTI reported.
Sreesanth was banned for life by the BCCI for his alleged role in the IPL spot-fixing in 2013. Last Monday, a single judge bench of the Kerala High Court had passed an order that the bowler’s life-ban be lifted.
However, the BCCI is firm on its stand that they will not allow the speedster to make an immediate comeback. “Yes, the legal team has studied the Kerala High Court order. The order has been passed by a single judge bench. As per the natural nomenclature, the BCCI has the right to appeal to a larger bench of the Kerala High Court. Therefore, we will be appealing against the overturn of ban at the Division Bench of the Kerala High Court,” a senior BCCI official was quoted as saying.
It is learnt that BCCI with zero tolerance on corruption issues, has no sympathy for the pacer, who has represented India in 27 Tests, 53 ODIs and 10 T20 Internationals. In his order, Justice A Muhamed Mustaque also set aside all proceedings against Sreesanth initiated by the Board of Control for Cricket in India.
BCCI cite internal disciplinary committee decision
The court had earlier sought the BCCI’s stand on the plea by the cricketer, challenging the life ban imposed on him by the game’s governing body following the 2013 Indian Premier League spot-fixing scandal.
The BCCI had filed a counter-affidavit in the court in response to the plea by Sreesanth, who had challenged the life ban despite a court dropping all charges against the 34-year- old pacer.
The cricket board had said, “The decision of the sessions court to acquit the petitioner from the criminal charges has no impact whatsoever on the decision of the internal disciplinary committee of the BCCI to ban the petitioner from playing cricket tournaments organised by the BCCI and/or its affiliates.”
It had said the question before the court was whether the petitioner (and other accused) was liable to incur penal consequences under relevant criminal statutes.
On the other hand, the question before the BCCI Disciplinary Committee was whether the petitioner was guilty of match-fixing, corruption and gambling and violation of the internal disciplinary rules of the BCCI, the board had said.
“We don’t agree with the order. It definitely needs to be challenged and within a week the appeal would be filed in the Kerala high court. We were always clear on this case as the board is firm on its zero tolerance policy,” AFP reported a BCCI official as saying. The standard of proof required under a penal statute was much higher than the proof required for a disciplinary inquiry, it had said.