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BCCI vs Lodha: CoA Goes Beyond Brief, Confuses State Associations

Clearly, the CoA seems to have ignored the intent of the SC wherein it has clearly stated that the court will settle the draft constitution subject to the outcome of the state associations’ application.

Baidurjo Bhose |Cricketnext |May 21, 2018, 6:37 PM IST
BCCI vs Lodha: CoA Goes Beyond Brief, Confuses State Associations

New Delhi: The Supreme Court bench comprising Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice DY Chandrachud have set July 5 as the next hearing date in the BCCI matter after Amicus Curiae Gopal Subramanium had shared the suggestions for the new board constitution with all the state associations and office bearers. But in a surprise move, the SC-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) has now written to the state associations, asking them to act even before the hearing.

In a letter addressed to all the state associations, in possession of Cricketnext, the CoA has said that there have been certain developments due to which it has become necessary to issue further communication to the state bodies. This despite the clear instruction from the three-member bench that the submissions made by the Amicus Curiae are to be deliberated by them. The BCCI state associations and the office-bearers had readied their suggestions and submitted to the Amicus Curiae and the bench had reiterated that the finalisation of the draft constitution would depend on its order and it would be binding.

The CoA though has issued fresh recommendations as it 'anticipates a direction by the Supreme Court bench that the affairs of each of the state associations be administered by an administrator'; to be appointed by the High Court till the time fresh, free, fair and untainted elections are conducted.

The letter shows it is the view of the CoA that: “It is mandatory for all State Associations (including those which have only representatives of district associations or clubs as voting members in the General Body) to grant membership with voting rights to former international players (men and women) hailing from the State. Membership with voting rights should be granted to former international players (men and women) hailing from the State prior to conduct of elections such that they shall be entitled to vote in the said elections.

"A list of all such former international players (men and women) who have been granted membership with voting rights shall be provided to the Committee of Administrators and put up on the website of the State Association prior to finalization of the electoral roll of the State Association by the electoral officer so that any former international players (men and women) who may have been missed out have an opportunity to have their name included therein.

The CoA in the letter further directed the state associations to not conduct any elections without the appointment of administrators by the respective High Courts.

“It would not be appropriate for any State Association (including any State Association that has or may hereafter be declared compliant for the purpose of receiving funds from BCCI in terms of the orders dated 7th October 2016 and 21st October 2016 passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court) to conduct elections until the New BCCI Constitution is finalized/ approved by the Hon’ble Supreme Court and an administrator is appointed by the concerned Hon’ble High Court to administer the affairs of the said State Association pending elections."

Clearly, the CoA seems to have ignored the intent of the SC wherein it has clearly stated that the court will settle the draft constitution subject to the outcome of the state associations’ application. The action of the CoA could in fact create a case of confusion between the former players and the state associations.

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