They say silence is golden. But the silence that BCCI officials provided when it came to briefing the media after yesterday’s Emergent Meeting of the Working Committee at the Cricket Centre, to borrow the term used by Supreme Court justice A K Patnaik to describe N Srinivasan sticking to his president’s seat, was ‘nauseating for cricket’.
BCCI stand-in chief Shivlal Yadav at the Cricket Centre yesterday. Pic/Bipin Kokate.
The only official word emanating from BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel was: “We have finalised the three-member panel that will be proposed to the Supreme Court but considering the sanctity of the court, I cannot reveal their names.”
BCCI vice president Rajiv Shukla at the Cricket Centre yesterday. Pic/Bipin Kokate.
Had it not been for the ‘benevolence’ of a couple of attendees from the state associations, one wouldn’t have known the names of the people the Board intends to propose to the Supreme Court on April 22, in order to form the panel that will investigate the IPL 6 spot fixing scandal.
BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel. Pic/Sameer Markande.
Dr PV Shetty, who represented the Mumbai Cricket Association, and TC Mathew representative of the Kerala Cricket Association, broke the news to the media that the panel included RK Raghavan, former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) director, JN Patel, former chief justice of the Calcutta High Court, and former India captain Ravi Shastri.
Critics go missing
Interestingly, some vocal critics of BCCI’s sidelined chief N Srinivasan like Shashank Manohar and Jagmohan Dalmiya too chose not to air their views about how the three-member panel was decided. By beating a hasty retreat, the BCCI officials probably indicated that all was not well in a mightily crucial meeting. The body language of the officials after the two-hour meet suggested that a lot of hard-ball had been played before the names of the officials could be arrived at.
Shukla’s early exit
One of the BCCI vice-presidents Rajiv Shulka left the meeting after an hour, probably to attend to the more pressing matters of the Congress party whose chief Sonia Gandhi was addressing a rally at the Bandra-Kurla Complex ground.
Meanwhile, all speculation about Srinivasan attending the meet in his capacity as the chief of Tamil Nadu Cricket Association was put to rest as he kept himself away, lest he antagonise the Supreme Court even further.
The Emergent Meeting was held following demand from some state associations after the Supreme Court’s hearing on April 16.
The Court had said that the BCCI should conduct a probe against N Srinivasan and 12 others in the betting and spot fixing scandal to maintain its institutional autonomy as the Court couldn’t ‘close its eyes’ to the allegations made by the Justice Mukul Mudgal committee.