» Cricket » Pawar returns at MCA, but rules out BCCI comeback

Pawar returns at MCA, but rules out BCCI comeback

By Harish Kotian
October 18, 2013 23:14 IST
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Former president Sharad Pawar may have made a comeback in the Mumbai Cricket Association after being elected unopposed on Friday, but the Union Minister for Agriculture announced that he has no plans to return to the Board of Control for Cricket in India set-up.

"Basically I have no time for BCCI. I might attend meetings but I will not take up any responsibility. I want to serve my home association and do something for them," Pawar said, in Mumbai, after the MCA’s annual general meeting.

He also took the opportunity to appoint a five-member committee to plan a felicitation for Sachin Tendulkar, who will retire after playing in his 200th Test in Mumbai next month.

"Kolkata is planning some grand celebrations on all the five days of Sachin’s 199th Test and we will also try a big celebration in the 200th Test," the newly-elected president said.

Pawar, Ratnakar Shetty, Vinod Deshpande, Milind Rege and Shripad Halbe are the committee members and will meet on October 21 to plan for the grand farewell for the batting icon.

Pawar faced no competition in the election for president as BJP leader Gopinath Munde nomination was rejected.

"I'm unhappy today despite winning. I never wanted to come as unopposed and was hoping for a contest. Election is a democratic process and I was hoping someone will stand against me," he said.

Pawar hopes to replicate the success of his first tenure, which stretched for a decade -- from 2001 to 2011.

“In the 10 years we had a lot of changes in Wankhede stadium; to get the BCCI office shifted we made the Cricket Centre office; so both the MCA and BCCI offices are here now. We took 13 acres of land from the government for the Bandra-Kurla Complex to build our cricket academy, which is the best in India.

“In Kandivali, we built a good facility for our players so that they don’t have come to Wankhede to practice and play; and even in eastern suburbs now they will have all the facilities,” he said.

He claimed that the MCA is looking to build more facilities for players in the neighbouring areas of Thane and Dombivli.

“We have decided to build a good facility in Thane-Dombivli and today Lodha Group have given me 15 acres of land at a cost of rupee one per year for 99 years. We will try and create more infrastructure so that players will get more opportunities to practice and improve. And former players will also get the chance to live their life with respect. Also, all the groups will come together and work as one unit,” he said.

Ravi Sawant, who made way for Pawar, was elected as the MCA vice-president along with Vijay Patil, who retained his post.

The Bal Mahaddalkar group dominated the election and was able to hold on to all the key posts.

Vinod Deshpande was elected treasurer, while PV Shetty and Nitin Dalal retained their posts as joint-secretaries.

The 11 members who were successfully elected to the MCA managing committee include former India pacer Abey Kuruvilla and former India batsman Lalchand Rajput.

Results (with number of votes):

MCA president: Sharad Pawar

Vice-presidents: Ravi Savant (159) ; Vijay Patil (198 votes)

Treasurer: Vinod Deshpande (162)

Joint-secretaries: PV Shetty (203 votes); Nitin Dalal (169 votes)

Managing committee: Nadeem Memon (179), Deepak Patil (176), Lalchand Rajput (176), Arvind Kadam (170), Abey Kuruvilla (169), Sanjay Patil (169), Vazge (167), Arman Mallick (145), Shrikant (145), Navin Shetty (143), Deepak Murkar (141).

Photograph: Harish Kotian

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