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Supreme Court committee recommends sweeping changes in BCCI in bid to bring in transparency


By C.Rajshekhar Rao

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

NEW DELHI _ A court-appointed committee has urged a shake-up to the administration of the Board of Control for Cricket in India in the wake of a spot-fixing scam and alleged conflicts of interest.

The three-member panel headed by Justice Rajendra Lodha suggested age and term limits for office-bearers, the formation of a players’ association and a streamlining of the election process.

The report, which was submitted to the Supreme Court on Monday for ratification, also recommended that ministers and government officials not hold office.

The panel consulted former India captains Bishan Singh Bedi, Kapil Dev, Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Anil Kumble as well as journalists, historians and lawyers.

The committee, which was given the additional mandate of helping restructure the BCCI even as it looked into corruption allegations last year, recommended a cap of three tenures of three years each for BCCI officials, with no two consecutive terms, and an age cap of 70.

It also announced a steering committee for the formation of a players’ association, run by “former international and domestic players comprising both men and women who have retired”.

The names suggested by the panel for the steering committee include that of Kumble and 1983 World Cup hero Mohinder Amarnath.

“It will not act as a union but give players a voice and use their expertise for the development and betterment of the game,” Justice Lodha said.

The panel recommended a provincial-based election system rather than the present one based on teams in domestic cricket which include some institutional teams and clubs.

The panel also advised that a chief executive be appointed and be assisted by six professional managers for the regular functioning of the association.

In a bid to ensure transparency, it was also suggested that the BCCI be brought under the Right to Information Act in which it will be bound to share administrative and financial details with the public.

The Lodha panel last year gave two-year suspensions on IPL teams Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals after Chennai team principal Gurunath Meiyappan and Rajasthan co-owner Raj Kundra were found to be in contact with illegal gamblers during the 2013 IPL season.

Meiyappan, son-in-law of former International Cricket Council chairman Narainaswamy Srinivasan, and Kundra were banned for life from cricket administration.

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