MCA furious as CoA turn down extra time plea to appoint electoral officer

Updated: Aug 21, 2019, 07:48 IST | Harit N Joshi

The CoA rejected MCA's plea stating that "MCA did not approach the CoA regarding the unavailability of such eligible officers for appointment as electoral officers"

MCA furious as CoA turn down extra time plea to appoint electoral officer
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The Mumbai Cricket Association's (MCA) request for extra time to appoint an electoral officer as per the new guidelines, has been rejected by the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA).

In an email dated August 17, the CoA rejected MCA's plea stating that "MCA did not approach the CoA regarding the unavailability of such eligible officers for appointment as electoral officers or sought assistance of CoA in relation to such appointment, as deliberated in the mediation meeting with the learned Amicus [Curiae]."

'Not our fault'

The MCA is furious with the CoA. "First of all, it is not our fault. We have gone as per BCCI's registered constitution. The CoA then issues fresh guidelines over appointment of the electoral officer. Since the CoA has initiated some change to the appointment of electoral officer, they must grant some time to us," an MCA official told mid-day.

The MCA proposed three candidates — Avinash Sanas, Atul Jadhav and Jagdish More — as electoral/returning officer. These nominations were provided by the State Election Commission. State associations have to hold elections by September 14 to be eligible to vote in the October 22 BCCI polls.

As per BCCI's registered constitution, a former member of the Election Commission of India can be appointed as an electoral officer. According to MCA's draft constitution, "the apex council shall appoint an electoral officer, who shall be a former state election commissioner. In the event of such a person not being available, any appropriate officer from the state election commission nominated by the present state election commissioner shall be appointed as an electoral officer."

Also Read: Rahul Dravid presents grand plan for NCA; gets CoA backing in conflict case

However, as per the CoA directions issued on July 25, a former Chief Election Commissioner of India, a former member of the Election Commission of India or a former Election Commissioner of the State can be appointed as an electoral officer.

CoA directions

"In case, such person is not available, then a former Election Commissioner of a neighbouring state(s) may be appointed," the CoA stated.

State associations can also appoint a former Chief Electoral Officer of the state or neighbouring states. The CoA clarified that a former joint or additional chief election commissioner and joint or additional chief electoral officers of states are not eligible for being appointed as the electoral officer of the state association.

The CoA in that email has also directed the MCA to amend Clause 33 (1) of their draft constitution to, "the apex council shall appoint an electoral officer, who shall be a former state election commissioner." It also reminded MCA to provide a registered copy of the approved constitution.

Also Read: CoA can't decide on voting rights of states, SC will: BCCI lawyer

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