Lodha’s Big Blow: No Minister or Govt Servant in BCCI’s Top Brass

In a big blow to BCCI, the SC appointed Justice Lodha Committee recommended that no ministers should run the board.

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Sports
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Justice R. M. Lodha, Chairman of the Supreme Court appointed Justice Lodha Committee, submitted the panel’s report to the Supreme Court on Monday. (Photo: PTI)

The Supreme Court appointed Justice Lodha Committee fired its final salvo on Monday with their list of recommendations for the BCCI.

While the three-member committee comprising Justice (Retd) RM Lodha, Justice (Retd) Ashok Bhan and Justice (Retd) RV Raveendran made the following recommendations, the Supreme Court will make the final call on if they will be binding on the BCCI.

One Association Per State

In an expected move, Justice Lodha suggested that each state be allowed only one primary association and get one vote in the BCCI. Other members and institutional units like Services, Railways, CCI, NCC etc will be relegated to associate status without voting rights.

This would affect states like Maharashtra that has three BCCI affiliated associations - the Mumbai Cricket Association, Maharashtra Cricket Association and Vidarbha Cricket Association. There will now only be one voting member out of the three, if the recommendations are implemented by the BCCI

No Ministers in BCCI

In his announcement press conference, Justice Lodha left his most anticipated recommendation for the end - the eligibility criteria for BCCI’s top brass.

As regards the office bearers of BCCI - President, VP, Secretary, Joint Secretary and Treasurer, certain eligibility criteria has been fixed like, he must be an Indian, he must not be above age of 70, he must not be insolvent, he must not be a minister or a government servant and who has not held office in the BCCI for a cumulative period for nine years.

Justice (Retd) R M Lodha

No BCCI office-bearer can have more than two consecutive terms or hold office for more than 3 terms with the rider that there will be a cooling off after each term.

Only Cricketers Will Select Team

The Lodha Committee also recommended a few changes in the selection procedure for the teams that represent India. They said the committee should have three members each who will be elected in the AGM.

Most importantly though, the report suggests that only those who have played international Test matches for India be allowed in the panel. Among the three, the player with the most Test caps should be named the chairman.

IPL and BCCI Governed Separately

The panel has recommended separate governing bodies for the IPL and BCCI.

The IPL’s council, Justice Lodha suggested, will have nine members - the BCCI’s secretary and the treasurer will be ex-officio members, while two more will be nominated/elected by the full members. Two others will be nominees of franchises and one will be a representative of the players association and one will a nominee of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India’s office.

File picture of former Chennai Super Kings’ official Gurunath Meiyappan with his father-in-law and N Srinivasan. (Photo: PTI)
File picture of former Chennai Super Kings’ official Gurunath Meiyappan with his father-in-law and N Srinivasan. (Photo: PTI)

Players Association and Handling Betting

Apart from the changes within the board, the Lodha Committee also recommended that a players’ association be formed in Indian cricket with the help of a steering committee comprising of Mohinder Amarnath, Diana Eduljee and Anil Kumble.

Most of the players who have played first-class, both men and women, and who have retired from competitive cricket will be in this association. This association shall be assigned functions and will be constituted and run with the financial support of the BCCI. However, they will not act as a minion. The idea is to give players voice, use their expertise and skills for the development and betterment of the game.

Justice (Retd) R M Lodha

Keeping in mind the recent scandal in IPL that led to the temporary suspension of CSK and RR, the Lodha panel also suggested that betting be legalised in the country.

Also suggested, a move to bring the BCCI under the RTI Act. As of now, the board comes under the Societies Act and is not answerable to the Government.

For detailed analysis of the Lodha report, click here: Lodha Report: Easy to Suggest, Impossible to Implement?

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