Lodha panel row: Did not seek ICC letter against recommendations, BCCI chief Anurag Thakur tells SC
He said he only pointed it out to Shashank Manohar that the ICC chairman had said the suggestions amount to governmental interference.
Board of Control for Cricket in India’s President Anurag Thakur on Monday filed the affidavit that the Supreme Court had directed him to submit. In his affidavit, Thakur denied the allegations that he has asked the International Cricket Council for a letter against the Lodha panel recommendations.
Thakur said he had only pointed it out to the ICC Chairman Shashank Manohar that he, as the BCCI chief, had said that the panel suggestion to appoint the nominee of Comptroller and Auditor General on apex council amounted to governmental interference. “Therefore requested him that being the ICC Chairman can a letter be issued, he said. However, Manohar told him that the matter was still undecided and pending before the court when he had made the statement.
On the same day, Amicus Curiae Gopal Subramaniam asked the Supreme Court to appoint an administrator or direct the Lodha panel to do so. The senior lawyer also sought civil and criminal contempt charges against BCCI officials for disobedience of the apex court order. The court reserved its order in the case after the BCCI said it needed more time to implement the panel recommendations.
On October 15, the BCCI had decided to oppose some of the reforms suggested by the court-appointed Justice RM Lodha committee, saying they were impractical. The key issues over which the Lodha committee and the BCCI are at loggerheads are the one-vote per state norm, another for one person per post, the age cap for office-bearers, and the cooling-off period.
During its last hearing on October 6, the apex court had told the BCCI to either implement the Lodha recommendations or face consequences. The apex court had also prohibited the board from transferring funds to state associations that didn’t implement the committee’s recommendations.
On September 28, the Lodha panel had filed a status report with the Supreme Court, asking it to sack the board’s top functionaries, including Thakur and Secretary Ajay Shirke, for non-compliance with its orders. The committee had also noted that several emails from them went unacknowledged by the BCCI. The board, however, had filed a response with the top court, refuting allegations of non-compliance with the committee’s recommendations and arguing that it had responded to all the emails.
The Lodha committee was formed after the spot-fixing and betting scandal emerged during the Indian Premier League in 2013.