Full text of press release

Full text of press release

Updated: June 23, 2010 11:48 IST
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New Delhi:Convening of Special General meeting of BCCI by its Hony. Secretary for ratification of his decision of referring the charges against Mr. Lalit Modi contained in the three showcause notices to the Disciplinary committee of BCCI for further proceedings is only a cover up for inherent illegality committed by Secretary BCCI. Under the BCCI Rules Secretary can issue show cause as well as take further action on reply to the show cause only upon consultation with the President. While, the President BCCI, being an eminent lawyer had the grace to rescue himself from the matter, how could the Secretary BCCI decide to refer the matter to the disciplinary committee on his own and seek post facto approval of his decision it by way of ratification by the General Body. It is like putting the chart before the Horse.

The subjective dissatisfaction of Secretary BCCI with regard to the replies of Mr.Modi to the three show cause notices surpasses every yardstick of fair play and blatantly violates the principles of natural justice. Lalit Modi raised serious issue and expressed pronounced apprehension about Secretary BCCI's fairness and bias against him. Therefore, Mr. Srinivasan, had no business to take a decision on whether sufficient cause existed to refer the matter to the Disciplinary Committee.

Forwarding of the Show Cause Notice to the Disciplinary Committee is not a mechanical act which he is obliged to perform but something which is required to be done only if the explanation put forth is not satisfactory. Lalit Modi, in each of his replies, has bluntly stated that Mr. Srinivasan, ought not to decide this, since, in doing so, Srinivasan would be acting as a judge in his own cause. While Mr. Shashank Manohar had the grace to rescue him Mr. Srinivasan has not. He has entered the fray and taken a conscious decision to refer the matter to the Disciplinary Committee. In doing so, Mr. Srinivasan has exhibited extreme impropriety and violated natural justice. The decision of Mr. Srinivasan to refer the matter to the Disciplinary Committee is therefore bad in law and amenable to judicial review.

Asking the General body of the BCCI to ratify an illegal decision is very different from asking the General Body of the BCCI to take a lawful decision. Mr. Srinivasan, in the circumstances, could (and in fact ought to) have convened a meeting of the General Body, where the General Body was left to decide , whether there was (in light to the replies filed by Lalit Modi) anything which survived to be referred to the Disciplinary Committee. This would have been lawful, correct and proper. Taking an illegal decision and then convening a meeting of the General Body for ratifying it, is not only unfair, but it is also neither appropriate nor desirable. By his involvement Mr. Srinivasan has infected the decision making process.

The very demand of Lalit Modi for recusal of both Mr.Shashank Manohar and Mr.Srinivasan based on the premise that whether there exists sufficient material to refer the matter to the Disciplinary Committee; or let the General Body decide whether there exists such material.
The fact that President BCCI has rescued himself by saying that in order to give fair opportunity during the enquiry and remove the doubts of bias etc but non-recusal and circumvention of rules and set procedure by Mr.Srinivan vindicates apprehensions of Lalit Modi.

Recusal of Mr. Shashank Manohar from Disciplinary committee does not suffice the purpose. The demand was for all interested parties not be associated with any proceeding concerning Lalit Modi show cause notices, including that the very fact whether any ground for issuance of the show cause exist or not be decided by independent and un- interested party. Had this not been so there was no need to demand for complete recusal of Mr. Srinivan who is not a member of the Disciplinary Committee.

Now it is not a Lalit Modi and Srinivasan fight but evidence of the manner in which the country's premier sport body is being administered. Complaints making serious charges against the Secretary have been made yet these are being swept under the carpet. Whereas, President BCCI has rescued himself the Secretary BCCI despite being in an utterly questionable position is calling the shots. Best of luck to the Khaap Panchayat of BCCI.

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