The BCCI has lifted its ban on Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul with immediate effect with both players included in Team India and India A squads. While Pandya will travel to New Zealand to take part in the series, Rahul will join the India A team, which is playing a 5 one-day games against England Lions in Thiruvananthapuram.
A statement by the BCCI said, “Hardik Pandya will be sent to New Zealand to join the team at the earliest and KL Rahul will join the India A squad to play the last 3 one-day games against England Lions.”
Earlier the Committee of Administrators (CoA) had issued a statement announcing the lifting of ban. It had said, “The Committee of Administrators (CoA) by emails dated 11.01.2019, and in exercise of Rule 41(6) of the Constitution of BCCI, suspended Mr. Hardik Pandya and Mr. K.L. Rahul in view of the allegations of misconduct against them, pending adjudication of the allegations under Rule 46 of the approved BCCI Constitution.
“Since the adjudication of all allegations of misconduct against any cricketer registered with, inter alia, the BCCI is required to be undertaken by the BCCI Ombudsman, whose appointment is pending directions of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, the CoA is the of the view that the interim suspension orders dated 11.01.2019 should be presently lifted with immediate effect.”
Both players were banned after their misogynistic comments on Koffee With Karan evoked strong reactions with demands growing for punitive measures against them. The board had recalled the players from Australia midway through the series.
The controversial show’s host, Karan Johar, had said that he felt personally responsible for the controversy and its consequences on the two cricketers, Karan told ET Now, “I invited them as guests and so the ramifications and repercussion of the show are my responsibility. I have had so many sleepless nights just wondering about how I can undo this damage, who is going to listen to me.” He, however, clarified that the controversy had now ‘gone into a zone,’ which was beyond his control.