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Lodha FAQs: Cooling off period for Ganguly, Shirke can't attend BCCI meet

Last updated on: January 12, 2017 17:52 IST

Come June 2017, Sourav Ganguly will have to go for a compulsory 'Cooling off' of three years having completed three years at Cricket Association of Bengal as secretary and president.

Sourav GangulySacked Board of Control for Cricket in India secretary Ajay Shirke cannot be Maharashtra Cricket Association's representative in BCCI meetings, the Lodha committee made it clear on Thursday in a seven-point response to queries on the administrative reforms made mandatory for the Board.

There was not much to cheer for Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) president Sourav Ganguly either because come June 2017, he will have to go for a compulsory 'Cooling off' of three years having completed three years at the state association as secretary and president.

It was also clarified that total tenure in cricket administration (state association plus BCCI) will be nine years cumulative and not 18 years as it was mentioned earlier.

The administrative career of CAB treasurer Biswarup Dey also ends, as the post of an assistant secretary that he held for two years, will be deemed as an office-bearer's post, which makes his cumulative state association tenure of 10 years.

The question pertaining to Shirke's entry was the second among Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Can a disqualified Office Bearer act as the representative/nominee of a Member Association or the BCCI? Can such an individual discharge any other role in or on behalf of the Association or the BCCI?

The answer stated: "In keeping with the spirit of the Hon'ble Supreme Court's judgement a disqualified office-bearer is no longer to be associated with cricket administration. He/She is disqualified from being a representative or nominee  of the member association or the BCCI and Cannot discharge any other role in or behalf of the association or the BCCI. He/She cannot function within the association in any patron or advisory capacity nor be a member of a committee or council."

The FAQ No 7 was directly related to Ganguly, whose name was doing rounds for the new BCCI president's post. While he can be a BCCI president but it would only be for a few months if one interprets Lodha Panel's answer properly.

The FAQ No 7 states: "If an individual has been an existing office bearer in a State/Member Association for 2 years, is he eligible to contest for the next elections without the 3 year cooling off period applying to him? If yes, what will be the term of his office?

The answer states: "If at the time of the election the existing office-bearer has not completed a period of 3 years, he is eligible to contest the election however, he will not have a full term and will have to demit office immediately upon the continuous 3 year period being completed. This is to avoid any potential abuse. For example, if there were no such bar, an office bearer could resign after 2 years and 9 months and then claim eligibility to stand at the next election 3 months later on the ground that a new term would commence."

Biswarup Dey's claim that his assistant secretary's post is a selected and not an elected one has been quashed as it is an office-bearer's post as per CAB constitution.

The FAQ No 4: In a State/Member Association, if an individual has occupied the post of Assistant Secretary, Assistant Treasurer, Director or any other post that is not defined as an 'Office Bearer' in the Report, then will his tenure in those posts be calculated towards the 9 year disqualification?

The answer: "If the constitution/bylaws of the state/member association has defined the post (assistant secretary, assistant treasurer, director etc) as an office-bearer post, then the tenure of an individual in any of those posts will be reckoned while determining whether the 9 year period has been completed.

"For example, in an association where the Constitution refers to the Assistant treasurer as office-bearer if a person has occupied that post for 3 years and also been secretary for 6 years, he stands disqualified."

The issues pertaining to elections in state associations and the answer makes it clear that if associations don't have pending cases against them, they can go ahead with elections conforming to the new set of reforms.

This question concerns Rajasthan Cricket Association and Hyderabad Cricket Association which are set to have their elections.

Another question was whether elections can be conducted for the Member Associations before the due amendments are made to their Constitutions/Bye-laws bringing them in line with the judgement.

The Answer: While there is no bar to the holding of elections (subject to orders of any court) if any election is held which is inconsistent with the committee's report and the judgement of the Supreme Court, then the same will be treated as void and with no legal sanctity. This would also necessarily imply that such an election is supervised by an election officer as prescribed under the recommendations.

"It would be prudent in the circumstances for such elections to be conducted under the guidance of the administrators to be appointed by the Hon'ble Supreme Court."

Chattisgarh State Cricket Sangh president Baldeo Bhatia  will also have to go for a compulsory cooling off as the period of his state's associated membership will also be counted.

However, none from the Bihar state body will have to go for 'cooling off' as they have not got any sanction from BCCI.

"There is no connection between the type of membership of the association and the eligibility of the office-bearer. Regardless of whether the association was/is a full member or associate/affiliate member, the entire tenure of the office-bearer will be calculated towards the 9 year period.

"However this will not apply to an association which has never been a member of the BCCI. In such an event, the tenure of the office-bearer will be calculated only from the date of the affiliation unless he had already been the office bearer of another affiliated association."

It was also clarified that any member of governing body, managing committee or working committee of a state/member association, who has never been an office-bearer will not be disqualified after 9 years if the said positions are not mentioned as office-bearers.

"Such an individual is eligible to contest an office bearer post, unless the constitution or Bye-laws of the association defines office-bearers to include the governing body/ managing committee/ working committee members."

The most commonly asked question was about how the 9-year tenure would be calculated and the committee made it clear that even a nine-year term in state association would mean end of the road in cricket administration.

"In view of the order dated 2.1.2017 as amended by the order dated 3.1.2017, an individual is disqualified from being the office bearer of the BCCI or the state/member association if he/she has been an office bearer of the BCCI or the state/member association for 9 years. For example, one who has been the office bearers of a state association for 9 years is disqualified from returning to cricket administration either at the BCCI or at any state association similarly, one who has been an office bearer at the state for 5 years and then at the BCCI for 4 years is also similarly disqualified.

Image: Sourav Ganguly

Photograph: BCCI

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