Complete E-Mail Conversation between CoA and BCCI Members on Hardik Pandya-KL Rahul
Here is the complete e-mail conversation between CoA members, Vinod Rai, Diana Edulji with BCCI head officials, Rahul Johri, Amitabh Choudhary, CK Khanna, and Anirudh Chaudhry. An internal e-mail correspondence reveals the actual talks between the head bosses on the matter concerning KL Rahul and Hardik Pandya; as the pair got suspended pending inquiry for their remarks on the famous TV show, Koffee with Karan.
Here is what everyone said –
Initially, Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul were given showcause notice by Rahul Johri; asking them to provide explanations on what unfolded during the TV show. As the comments passed on by Hardik Pandya were deemed as ‘crass’ by the CoA along with the office bearers of the BCCI; the step had to take. In response, Pandya said,
“Dear Sir, Please find attached my reply to the BCCI show cause notice. Also attached are the screenshots of my public apology as issued by me on my social media handles this morning.”
Replying to the same, the CEO said,
“The apology has obviously been drafted by the agency. Doesn’t appear sincere. I am inclined to suggest a penalty. But since I have not seen the clip, maybe Diana would like to suggest some penalty. There should be a penalty? What do you feel? Could be different for both players depending upon what they have said in the show.”
Not only this, he further added in response to the unconditional apology tendered by Hardik Pandya. Johri said,
“I have seen the remarks made by these two players on the show in print today. Very crass. No apology can cover it. I had asked Diana to suggest penalty because I had not seen the clip. I think we need to give both of them a two-match suspension. If Diana agrees, Rahul please draft an appropriate instruction and issue today as their explanations have come in. Separately please prepare an advisory to all BCCI contracted players and support staff.”
Diana Edulji enters the scene
The former India women’s cricketer then sought the legal opinion on the matter. Indranil Deshmukh advised BCCI to adhere to Rule 41 of the Constitution; look out for answers from them as to why the probe shouldn’t take place in the first go.
Meanwhile, the e-mail addressed to Edulji mentioned,
“The show cause letter (to Pandya and Rahul) should specify that (i) the same is being issued under Rule 41 of the BCCI Constitution and (ii) an enquiry against them has commenced. We are of the view that there is a risk of the communications sent by the BCCI to the players on 9th January 2019 not being construed as a communication under Rule 41 of the BCCI Constitution.”
“This is because the said communications dated 9th January 2019 do not contain the specifications/ingredients mentioned hereinabove. Therefore, to ensure that there are no procedural missteps, it would be preferable that fresh communications are issued by the CEO to the concerned players…”
It was further recommended that,
“The CEO should submit its report to the COA (as the COA is performing the role and responsibility of the Apex Council envisaged in the BCCI Constitution) at the earliest and in any event within 15 days from date of reference by the COA.”
Divergent views delayed the inquiry
Later, Rai gave his word saying the probe would be done past; looking at the schedule of the Australia-India second ODI. Meanwhile, Edulji had different views. She told the hurry shouldn’t spoil the matter, as it would like a cover up thing.
“We should be in no hurry to conduct the inquiry as then it will look like a cover up job being done. The behaviour of the players have been very controversial and should not be co realted [sic] with delibating [sic] team strength.”
“In order to be fair and transparent and in legal terms it is said that not only justice is done but also seen to be done. As such my view is we follow natural justice and total transparency and not let any external factors come into play.”
Let the court decide on the punishment – Diana Edulji
On the provisional suspension handed to the players, Diana brought an incident from 1936 when Lala Amarnath was sent back for alleged subordination.
“There has been a precedent when Lala Amarnath was sent back from UK. Such strict steps will ensure that no one henceforth makes such loose talk which are detrimental to the image of Cricketers, Cricket and BCCI at large. For your knowledge, in the recently concluded football World Cup a Croatian player was sent back after their first game on disciplinary grounds, Croatia went on to win the World Cup.”
For the further proceedings into the matter, Diana mentioned,
“As the SC hearing is scheduled for 17th Jan, let the court be informed about this situation and let an Ombudsman be appointed by the court instead of taking a wrong step of appointing the ad hoc ombudsman, which is not as per the new constitution.”
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