New Delhi: On a day when the Supreme Court once again came down hard on the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for its continued failure to fully implement the recommendations of Justice RM Lodha panel, senior advocate Gopal Subramanium on Wednesday urged for “stringent steps” to ensure compliance by the BCCI and resultant transparency in the board’s working. Also Read - Amid Nationwide Lockdown, Coronavirus Death Toll in India Reaches 50; Total Cases Stand at 1,965
Subramanium, who is assisting the top court as an amicus curiae in the BCCI case, sought directions against the top office bearers of the cash-rich cricket body, including acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary, to restrain them from being associated with the board. Also Read - China Says it is Ready to Help India Procure Ventilators But Ramping up Production Not Easy
The senior lawyer, in his written submissions filed before a bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra, said working and management of the BCCI should be entrusted to the apex-court appointed Committee of Administrators (COA) until fresh BCCI elections are held in accordance with the new Constitution. Also Read - BCCI Not Planning to Cut Virat Kohli and Co. Salaries Amid Coronavirus Pandemic
“It was expected that after such sweeping directions, the principal judgement will finally be implemented. However, the events that transpired thereafter demonstrates that the stakeholders are unwilling to implement reforms…
“A close scrutiny of these applications reveal that under the guise of seeking recall, the state associations had, in fact, challenged the principal judgement, thus in effect seeking a review of the principal judgement. This is clearly an abuse of process of this court,” Subramanium said.
He has also sought issuance of contempt notice to the existing office bearers of BCCI, including acting president CK Khanna, for obstructing the implementation of the judgement of the court.
He sought the court’s direction to “clarify that the period of cooling off will apply in respect of all office bearers of BCCI and State/Member Associations such that no person will be entitled to hold an office as an office-bearer immediately upon the conclusion of a 3-year term, either in BCCI or in a State Association until the exhaustion of the cooling off period.
“Direct that the new fund disbursement policy is made applicable with immediate effect and all further disbursements of funds by the BCCI to the State/Member Associations shall only be in accordance with the new fund disbursement policy framed by the COA,” he said.
Subramanium asked the court to constitute a separate committee headed by a former apex court judge and comprising a retired deputy Comptroller and Auditor General to conduct a forensic audit of each state association on the utilisation of funds disbursed to them.
“Restrain persons who are disqualified from being office bearers of their respective State/Member Associations from being nominated as the representatives to attend any SGM or AGM of BCCI,” he said.