Qaiser Mohammad Ali
October 7, 2015, will go down in the annals of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) as a red letter day as on Wednesday it uploaded its elusive constitution on its website. It is, perhaps, the first time in the 86-year existence of the BCCI that its rules and regulations have come in public domain.
The BCCI also announced on its website on Wednesday that the Board had shifted its treasury office from Chennai, the home of former BCCI president N. Srinvasan, to Mumbai, where the Board’s headquarters are based.
This step is being seen as a blow to Srinivasan as present treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry is close to him.
Till now, the treasury offices were run from three places – Chennai, New Delhi and Bhiwani, the home town of Chaudhry. The relocating of the treasury office will allow the Board to save a lot of expenditure.
The decision to upload BCCI constitution on its website and other steps are part of the new BCCI president Shashank Manohar’s specific agenda he had outlined on Sunday, minutes after taking over the reins.
“The BCCI constitution was uploaded the first thing this morning. By uploading it, Manohar has matched his words with action,” a BCCI official told jantakareporter.com.
He added, “In the coming days, all the financial details of the contracts that the BCCI has concluded worth Rs 25 lakh or more would be uploaded, as promised by Manohar.”
The ‘BCCI Memorandum and Rules and Regulations’ booklet is 52 pages long.
Also on Wednesday, the BCCI announced the appointment of Gokhale & Sathe, a Mumbai-based reputed firm and having extensive experience in Trust matters, as its advisor on direct tax matters and internal auditor for the accounting year 2015-16. This appointment comes into effect immediately.
“Keeping in mind that all tax matters of the BCCI are with the Income Tax Office in Mumbai, the Board has decided to hire a Tax Advisor and Internal Auditor that operates out of Mumbai,” said the BCCI website.
Gokhale & Sathe have replaced PB Vijayraghavan & Co. of Chennai that was appointed by Srinivasan, who is also chairman of the ICC and president of the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association. This is yet another blow to Srinivasan and indicative of his losing grip over the world’s wealthiest cricket body that the BCCI is.
The BCCI constitution was last revised on September 12, 2012, at a special general meeting. That was the day when the Board members voted to give office-bearers (read ‘themselves’) a straight three-year tenure. Earlier, their tenure used to be of two straight years, and they would get a third year if they were elected again at the AGM.
That day, they also decided to give the office-bearers a second term of three straight years. Earlier, the office-bearers could only have one term.
There are two versions why the general body decided to give a second term to future presidents. One belief is that Srinivasan got it amended for himself, so that he could continue in the chair as BCCI president after his three-year tenure expired in September 2014.
The other version, given my Manohar some time ago, is that it was amended so that Arun Jaitley, now a union minister, could become the BCCI president after Srinavasan.
“It was specifically done for Mr Jaitley as he was the unanimous choice of the members,” Manohar had said in September last year.
Also on September 15, 2012, Board members decided to do away with the restriction of having the president from a particular zone, thus throwing open the opportunity for all to contest for the top post.