» Cricket » New president Manohar's 3-point agenda to clean BCCI's image

New president Manohar's 3-point agenda to clean BCCI's image

By Harish Kotian
Last updated on: October 05, 2015 06:50 IST
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- BCCI to frame regulations with regards to conflict of interest of administrators, players and their staff.

- BCCI may appoint an investigation agency in consultation with government to tackle match-fixing.

- State associations to be made accountable for the money paid to them by the BCCI every year, their accounts to be audited by an independent auditor appointed by the board.

Shashank Manohar

IMAGE: New BCCI president Shashank Manohar addresses the media in Mumbai. Photograph: PTI

Immediately after taking over as Board of Control for Cricket in India president for the second time, Shashank Manohar stressed that his priority is to address the conflict of interest issue, prevent corruption and make the functioning of the Board transparent.

- All you need to know about the new BCCI boss

“In the last few days, the confidence of cricket-loving fans has shaken due to certain things that have happened, unpleasant things that have happened, but, leaving them aside, [it is duty of] all the members of the board to build the reputation of the Board and bring it back to its full reputation for which a lot of administrators have worked hard,” Manohar said at the BCCI headquarters in Mumbai on Sunday after the Special General Meeting of the Board, during which he was elected unopposed.

He requested everyone to give him two months' time so that he could study all the developments in the BCCI in the last two years and set about rectifying past mistakes.

New BCCI president Shashank Manohar, left, with BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur

IMAGE: BCCI president Shashank Manohar, left, with secretary Anurag Thakur in Mumbai. Photograph: PTI

Manohar’s predecessor, Narayanswami Srinivasan, was found guilty by the Supreme Court for his dual role of BCCI chief and owner of Indian Premier League franchise Chennai Super Kings and barred from seeking re-election for another term.

“The first thing would be, as regards the conflict of interest issues, the Board would frame regulations with regards to conflict of interest of administrators, players and their staff. That would be done within a month’s time, and the board would also appoint and ombudsman or an ethics officer who would be independent of this board and who would look into the complaints as with regards to conflict of interest of the administrators, players or the staff,” Manohar announced.

Manohar, 58, who was BCCI chief from 2008 to 2011, said the Board is very serious about tackling the evil of match-fixing and is looking at taking the help of an investigating agency.

“The board would lay down the norms and would take forward the measures to prevent corruption in this game, for which the board would make programmes to educate players.

"As also with the help of my secretary, who is a sitting member of Parliament, we would like to meet the government officials to see and work out if we can get certain investigative agency, because the Board people do not have any investigative powers and, therefore, our hands are tied. And that thing can also be worked out to curb corruption in this game, so that we can restore faith of cricketing fans that the game is clean,” he said.

Shashank Manohar

IMAGE: BCCI president Shashank Manohar, left, with secretary Anurag Thakur. Photograph: PTI

The Vidarbha-based lawyer is also planning to have an independent ethics officer who will be entrusted with dealing issues related to conflict of interest in the BCCI.

"BCCI had formed regulation for players, coaches and staff. We are planning to have an Ombudsman or an Ethics Officer independent of the Board who can look into the complaints regarding Conflict of Interest.

"Secondly, we need to lay down the norms and measures to prevent corruption in the games. We will have more programmes to educate players."

Manohar also wants the state associations to be transparent with funds granted to them by the BCCI every year.

The Board distributes around 70 percent of its profits to members. Till now, they went unaccounted.

“A lot of debate goes on that the associations are paid huge money by the Board and nobody knows what happens to that money, whether it is spent on cricketing activities or otherwise.

"Now, the accounts of all associations are audited by their auditors. However, we would build a system by which the accounts of the affiliated units would be audited by an independent auditor appointed by the Board; thereafter, the further money would be released to the state associations.

"The Board would also be empowered to take action in case the Board finds that the money which has been given to the state association is not being properly utilised,” Manohar said.

In another major initiative towards making the working of the BCCI more transparent, he declared that any expense of over Rs 25 lakh by the Board and its annual balance sheet would be put up on their website.

“There is another grievance that the Board is not transparent and everything is kept under the wraps. I feel that this problem could be sorted out by putting on the website of the Board the constitution of the Board, all the rules of the Board, any expenditure made by the Board over and above an amount of 25 lakh so that people are aware on what activities the Board spends their money. And at the end of the year we can put the balance sheet of the Board on the website, with the result it is available to the entire public at large so that there is transparency in the activities of the Board.”

Manohar said he is unhappy with the functioning of the National Cricket Academy and wants it to play a bigger role in producing a pool of players for the national team and operate round the year.

“The Board would also look into starting of National Cricket Academy again, whose activities are not up to the mark as on date. And we would see to it that NCA functions round the year so that cricketing talent is developed in this country. Today we are short of the second line.

"There are no spinners in this country. So it is also our duty to see to it that we have an available lot as a replacement for the current players.”

In a big shot in the arm for women’s cricket, he announced that the country's women cricketers would also be awarded central contracts.

“The Board would also like to develop women’s cricket and we would enter into contracts with women cricketers as we enter into contracts with the men’s team. That would promote the game, and more and more women players would love to play this game,” he said.

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