Qaiser Mohammad Ali
Three members of the four-member Delhi junior selection committee resigned on Tuesday, plunging the Delhi and District Cricket Association in a deeper morass. This committee was mandated by the DDCA executive committee to pick under-14, under-16 and under-19 teams for the 2015-16 cricket season.
Nikhil Chopra, chairman of the selection committee and a former India Test player, 1983 World Cup-winning team member Sunil Valson, and selection committee convenor Salil Seth resigned en- masse from the committee which was duly appointed on September 17, after the three BJP government nominees floated the resolution.
The three submitted their joint resignation letter to DDCA general secretary Anil Khanna on Tuesday, with copies to DDCA president and vice-presidents.
The third selector, Suresh Luthra, chose not to resign, though he was taken into confidence by Chopra, Valson and Seth, said DDCA sources.
In their resignation letter, the three persons say they were “shocked” at being sidelined by a section of the DDCA administrators who last week “illegally” announced a “parallel” selection committee without “intimating” them.
Last week, DDCA vice-presidents Chetan Chauhan and CK Khanna, who is also a BCCI vice-president, and sports working committee convenor Vinod Tihara, put up a notice on the noticeboard at the Ferozeshah Kotla, announcing new selection panels for under-14 and under-16.
“Our effort was to ensure that the players get an opportunity to showcase their talent. In fact, we selected the under-19 for the Vinoo Mankad Trophy and full marks to the players that they performed exceptionally well by topping the [north] zone in rather convincing manner,” reads the resignation letter.
“Now, in the meanwhile, a new set of selectors for under-14 and under-16 have [been] announced by the DDCA without any intimation to us, which is rather shocking and more importantly in violation of the earlier resolution passed by the same executive committee,” says the letter.
“This leaves us with no choice, but to resign from our appointment as selectors/convenor for u-14, u-16 and u-19 age groups. This letter may therefore be treated as our resignations.”
Anil Khanna said he has received the email and that he would talk to the selectors and the convenor on Wednesday.
“I have received their email. But I have not accepted their resignation so far. I will talk to them tomorrow,” Khanna told jantakareporter.com.
When pointed out that “parallel” selection committees for under-14 and under-16 have been constituted while the original one also existed, Khanna feigned ignorance.
He said, “I am not aware of that as I have not been going to the club [DDCA] for 10-12 days because I have fractured my leg and then my daughter fell sick. But it will be better if you speak to CK Khanna.”
The real reason, say DDCA sources, for forming parallel panels was that the Nikhil Chopra-led panel was doing its job “honestly”.
“These selectors were going about their task in a transparent manner, and this was annoying certain people in the DDCA who wanted their own ‘boys’ in the junior teams. When all their efforts to manipulate selection went in vain, some of them joined hands and announced parallel panels last week,” a source told jantakareporter.com
“Imagine, CK Khanna, who is a BCCI vice-president, has become convenor of the under-14 panel. It’s hugely disgraceful he is not even living up to the stature of a BCCI vice-president,” he said. “The situation in DDCA has become really bad now.”