BCCI to cancel New Zealand series: Entire home season also in doubt
A brilliant victory in the 250th Test at home has turned sour for India due to some off the field issues. Justice LM Lodha has directed the banks to freeze the accounts of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and it has not gone down too well with the cricket board who are contemplating on cancelling the ongoing New Zealand series, which has a Test and five ODIs remaining.
As reported in Indian Express, a senior official of the BCCI said that the latest incident has left them with no other option but to scrap the series to avoid humiliation in front of the world.
“We have no option other than to call off the India-New Zealand series as our banks have decided to freeze BCCI accounts. We don’t want India to be humiliated in front of the world. How can we function, how can we hold any games now? Who will make the payment? Freezing a bank account is no joke. An international team is here, and there is so much at stake,” the BCCI official said.
Earlier the Lodha Panel issued a letter which stated that the board should not take any steps towards financial disbursement of the amounts. The letter warned the board that it can be dragged to Supreme Court if they violate the directions.
“It has come to the notice of this Committee that certain decisions have been taken at the ‘Emergent Working Committee’ meeting of the BCCI on 30th September 2016 to disburse large funds to the various member associations,” the letter stated.
I“As the status report is to be taken up for directions by the Hon’ble Court on Thursday, 6.10.2016, you are hereby directed not to take any steps towards financial disbursement of the amounts as resolved/approved after the direction dated 31.8.2016. Any violation of this direction will be placed before the Hon’ble Supreme Court for appropriate directions,” the letter further said.
The letter was also addressed to BCCI secretary Ajay Shirke, CEO Rahul Johri and treasurer Anirudh Choudhary asking them not go ahead with the disbursement of the amounts as planned in the ‘Emergent Working Committee’ meeting of the board.
“You are aware that by way of this Committee’s direction dated 31.8.2016, no further decisions were to be taken regarding the future apart from routine matters. The disbursement of these amounts are not routine, and in any case, not emergent,” the letter said.
Meanwhile, The Times of India has reported that Bank of Maharashtra has already frozen the BCCI account while Yes Bank was still not sure of what to do. The report claimed that the banks will go ahead with Lodha Panel’s directions.
Speaking to the daily, a senior board official even said that the entire home season can be in danger after the Lodha Panel’s latest step.
“How can we play the Test against New Zealand when we won’t have the money to pay their board for the tour? They (Lodha panel) are raising questions over money that belongs to the BCCI and is being distributed to its member associations under its rules and regulations. The match cannot go ahead,” the official said.
“In fact, the entire home season may now be in doubt after what is happening. They (Lodha panel) are only interested in doing what they think is right. Whereas it is the BCCI’s money which the BCCI is distributing for improvement of infrastructure,” another official was quoted as saying.
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