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    Paul challenges Dalmiya for CAB top post

    Kolkata: Just when Cricket Association of Bengal czar Jagmohan Dalmiya thought it would be a smooth ride to the President's post for the fourth consecutive term, Samar Paul of the Aryan Club on Friday filed his nomination to contest the seasoned administrator for the top post in election to be held at the 80th annual general meeting on July 28.

    A former Joint Secretary during 2007-08, Paul filed his papers on the last day of nominations and hoped to get support in his fight against the CAB heavyweight who had been holding the top post since 1993 barring a 19-month hiatus after his expulsion from Sharad Pawar-led BCCI following fund embezzlement charges in December 2006.

    "He (Dalmiya) is showing his influence at the CAB for about 30 years. As his Joint Secretary Biswarup Dey's term was ending this year, he (Dalmiya) even demoted him to field him for the treasurer's post.

    "We have to bring transparency in the administration. To protest this, I have finally decided to contest against him. I hope to get support," Paul told PTI.

    With his chances looking slim, Paul said he would seek support of former India skipper Sourav Ganguly who is the General Secretary of Barisha Sporting Club.

    "I will speak to him soon. I hope to get his support and give him (Dalmiya) a fight," Paul, who has won only once from six contests at CAB, said.

    Dalmiya on Thursday had announced his joint-secretary Dey's name for the treasurer's post, a move the CAB President termed as a "masterstroke".

    The current treasurer Subir Ganguly is vacating his post for Dey as the former is now Dalmiya's man for the joint-secretary.

    As for the vice-presidents, Alok Nandi, Sambhunath Poddar, Malay Basu and Subhas Kundu are the Dalmiya group's choice, while Sujan Mukherjee will continue as the other joint secretary.

    The Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee government in 2006 had failed in its bid to unseat Dalmiya who pipped Prasun Mukherjee, then police commissioner, by a margin of five votes.

    Mukherjee eventually became the President only after Dalmiya was suspended by the BCCI.

    However, it was not long for Dalmiya to stage a comeback in July 2008, defeating Mukherjee by a convincing margin.