The new office bearers of the Rajasthan Cricket Association have suspended Nagaur, the district from where Lalit Modi had contested the RCA elections in December last year. In a dramatic move on Saturday, Modi was removed as RCA president. Although Modi's camp said the move was illegal, the new officials are doing everything to win the hearts of Board of Control for Cricket in India mandarins.
Amin Pathan, the "working president" of RCA, took charge on Monday and promptly decided to suspend Nagaur, apparently on 'instructions' from the BCCI. Pathan and his team are planning to meet BCCI officials and end the standoff with the Board. RCA was suspended by the BCCI for electing Modi, who was banned by the BCCI last year for mishandling funds as IPL commissioner.
In what has become an open conflict between Pathan and Modi factions, the former has claimed that he enjoys majority support. "We have support of 23 out of 33 units and a few more districts are likely to join us. We told the authorities (BCCI) that we have the majority and we can prove it physically," Pathan said. Interestingly, Pathan was a Modi supporter till equations changed recently.
Modi's faction claims that 23 of the 33 units had in fact voted for the embattled ex-IPL chief. The Modi camp also argued that the RCA meeting was illegal as a 21-day mandatory notice period was not given. Nagaur's suspension therefore, will only fuel the raging fire in a state association which has earned considerable BCCI ire.
Ever since Modi was declared RCA president by the court in May this year, the BCCI had banned the body. No international or IPL matches were held in the Sawai Man Singh stadium in Jaipur. Rajasthan also lost out on the annual Board grant of up to Rs 29 crore. RCA were also left out of the domestic calendar.
While Modi vowed to fight BCCI and 'cleanse the system,' Pathan claims nothing happened. "Rajasthan cricket is suffering. It was shameful that a Rajasthan team was not being allowed to play in domestic cricket. We were told by Lalit Modi and his confidantes that there would be no harm to Rajasthan cricket and they would get the permission from BCCI. But nothing has happened till now except court cases," said Pathan.
Reports say Pathan has the blessings of the state's BJP CM Vasundhara Raje and the timing of the coup too was well-timed. While BCCI approval should now be a formality, Modi's camp will be bracing for one more court battle. BCCI has already challenged Modi's election in court.