Supreme Court judges Justice A.K. Patnaik and Justice J.S. Kehar expressed their disappointment at N. Srinivasan continuing to run for an extension as Board of Control for Cricket in India president when his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan is facing charges of betting and match-fixing during this year's Indian Premier League. While hearing an application to stop Srinivasan from contesting the BCCI election in Chennai on Sunday, the judges said: "Why he is in charge (as the BCCI president) if his son-in-law has been charge sheeted?"
The Supreme Court on Friday was deliberating on an application filed by the Cricket Association of Bihar seeking interim injunction restraining Srinivasan from contesting for the post of BCCI president in the AGM to be held in Chennai. The Bihar association has appealed that Srinivasan be not inducted in any committee of the Board till all cases pertaining to IPL corruption were resolved. Srinivasan is seeking a year's extension after completing his two-year stay this month.
The court has allowed the BCCI elections to go ahead on Sunday and has not stopped Srinivasan from contesting. But it has also said that Srinivasan will not be able to deliver his duties as president till the court cleared him to assume office. The Supreme Court will again hear the Bihar application again on Monday.
But the court's mood is clear. Taking exception to Srinivasan still holding charge of BCCI, the judges asked: "Why you (Srinivasan) are so keen to be elected?". They added: "We do not know anyone. We only know cricket. We only know BCCI."
The court had earlier posted for October the hearing on cross appeals filed by BCCI and Bihar against the Bombay High Court's verdict declaring as illegal the probe panel appointed by the Board to look into the spot-fixing scandal.
It had on August 30 heard the petition filed by Aditya Verma, secretary, CAB, challenging the High Court's order refusing to appoint a fresh committee to probe the scam. The court had also issued notices to BCCI, Srinivasan, his company India Cements which owns IPL team Chennai Super Kings, and Rajasthan Royals on the plea.
Bihar has pleaded that when the High Court declared the panel of two judges as unconstitutional, it should have appointed a fresh committee to look into the issue. The apex court had on August 7 refused to grant interim stay on High Court verdict, derailing the plan of Srinivasan to return as chief of BCCI.
Srinivasan had stepped aside from discharging his duties as BCCI president in the light of spot-fixing and betting scandal which allegedly involved CSK's former team principal Meiyappan.
The High Court order had come on July 30, just two days after the panel comprising two former judges of the Madras High Court Justices T Jayarama Chouta and R Balasubramanian, submitted its report giving a clean chit to all those against whom the probe was conducted.
The panel had gone into the charges against India Cements Ltd, Meiyappan and Raj Kundra, co-owner of Rajasthan Royals. The panel was set up by BCCI and IPL Governing Council after the betting and fixing scandal surfaced.
(with PTI inputs)