The Board of Control for Cricket in India treasurer Aniruddh Chaudhry has questioned COA member Diana Edulji benefitting from a one-time ex-gratia payment given to women international cricketers, implying conflict of interest in the allocation.
Incidentally, Diana Edulji's sister Behroze, who played one 'Test' match for India in the mid 70's has also been a beneficiary of the BCCI largesse, a policy decision that was taken once COA took over board administration.
The matter was being talked about in hushed tones in the BCCI circle but has now come out in the open after treasurer Chaudhry's letter.
Chaudhry, who has been perceived as anti-COA and anti-CEO (Rahul Johri) has raised objections categorically in a comprehensive letter, which is in possession of PTI.
Chaudhry's letter makes it clear that he had signed BCCI's statement of accounts on protest as the powers of treasury has been allegedly taken away from him. He has not been provided with the full details of various transactions made by the board.
He has questioned the manner in which the One-Time without ratification from the Special General Body (SGM) and an alleged case of Conflict of Interest as Edulji and her direct relative (own sister) were beneficiary to a policy decision taken by a body of which she is herself a part.
Treasurer Chaudhry in his letter wrote: "It would be imperative to disclose as a subsequent event that the COA had decided to give One Time Benefit to women players and Ms Diana Edulji, who is a member of the COA, and her sister were a beneficiary of that decision."
He further wrote: "It would be pertinent to mention here that the presentation of the 'Display Cardboard Cheques' had already been done in full public view in course of the broadcast of IPL games before the SGM had ratified the same in a given circumstances of which the factum presentation in full public view was a part."
In Edulji's defence, it needs to be mentioned that she had recused herself at the time (she left the meeting room) when the policy decision was being taken. The matter was minuted.
It has not cut much ice with the senior BCCI officials, who have repeatedly felt short-changed by the COA.
Strong evidence of corruption: ICC on Ajman All Stars Meet
The ICC confirmed that there is "strong evidence" to indicate that the Ajman All Stars tournament is a "corrupt event" but at the same time clarified that the parent body cannot take action as it is not under their sanctioning purview.
The tournament being held in Dubai has come under the scanner for the bizarre way of dismissals during one of its matches, leading ICC to conduct investigations against it.
ICC's GM (Anti-Corruption Unit) Alex Marshall on his part stated: "The event was not approved or in any way sanctioned by the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) and therefore neither the ECB nor the ICC has authority to take action under cricket's anti-corruption rules against anybody who may have engaged in any corrupt practice.”
"However, after speaking to a number of those involved we consider there to be strong evidence to indicate this was a corrupt event and damaging to the wider reputation of cricket and as such will continue the investigation," he added.
Marshall said ICC is now trying to track down the organisers of the tournament.
Windies all-rounder Russell to play after year-long ban
West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell is all set to make his competitive cricket comeback, having served a one year ban from the game.
Russell will feature in the Jamaican team for the Regional Super50, West Indies' domestic 50-over competition, against Leeward Islands on Friday in Antigua.
The right-handed batsman was handed a year ban from playing all forms of cricket for a doping whereabouts rule violation.
Russell did not file his whereabouts on three occasions in 2015 as required, which also included a failed drugs test under the guidelines of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
Resultantly, the Jamaican Anti-Doping Commission banned him from playing any cricket between January 31, 2017 and January 30 this year.
IMAGE: Former Indian women's Test cricketer Diana Edulji, second from left
Photograph: Hitesh Harisinghani/Rediff.com