Srini saga set to get new chapter

Srini saga set to get new chapter

Shah, Dabir exit as vice-presidents; Jaitley quits post; Chaudhary to be treasurer

Srini saga set to get new chapter

N Srinivasan betrayed few signs of nerves on the eve of Sunday’s BCCI’s Annual General Meeting where he is set to be re-elected president of the board unopposed.

While Srinivasan’s confidence may have stemmed from the assurance of his re-election, the possibility of an adverse order from the Supreme Court -- which is hearing a petition filed by the Cricket Association of Bihar – appeared to be having little effect on him as he seized himself with other board members in finalising his panel to run the affairs of the board for the next one year.

From the final list of his ‘hand-picked’ panel it was clear that those who stood by Srinivasan didn’t go unrewarded. The biggest beneficiaries among them were Andhra Cricket Association secretary G Ganga Raju and Haryana Cricket Association chief Anirudh Chaudahry. While Ganga Raju is strongly tipped to head (a formal announcement to this effect is likely to come on Sunday) the richest board’s Finance Committee, Chaudhary is all set to be elected the treasurer during the AGM.

Raju and Goa Cricket Association chief Vinod Phadke held the key to topple Srinivasan, since the BCCI rules stipulated that a challenger should muster support of two south members as a proposer and a seconder. But Srinivasan upset the plans of Sharad Pawar-led group by getting Raju and Phadke on board. Raju, as a result, may replace union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia as the head of the Finance panel. Scindia, however, remains a possible contender for the post of the IPL chairman, a post vacated by another union minister Rajeev Shukla.

With the dates of general elections set to clash with IPL 7 schedule, the BCCI is thinking of appointing a politician who can negotiate with the government on security issues during the tournament and Scindia’s name is prominent among them. In case he rejects the offer, Board’s acting president Jagmohan Dalmiya or Odisha’s Ranjib Biswal could be appointed as the T20 league’s chief.

Raju and Chaudhary aren’t the only two to benefit from their loyalty towards Srinivasan. Acting secretary, Sanjay Patel, who has served in interim capacity for the last four months, too was favoured by Srinivasan for a permanent job in the same post.

While those who stood by Srinivasan were rewarded, those who opposed him were shown the door. Prominent among them were Saurashtra’s Niranjan Shah and vice-president from Central Zone Sudhir Dabir. Shah was reportedly getting cosy with former BCCI chief Sharad Pawar, who wants to get back to cricket administration, while Dabir is considered to be an ally of Shashank Manohar, a former BCCI president and now an adversary of Srinivasan.

Shukla and MCA president Ravi Savant will replace Dabir and Shah respectively as vice-presidential candidates from Central and West Zones. Another political bigwig, Arun Jaitley, gave up the vice-president's position due to political commitments and the BJP leader was replaced by his Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA) colleague SP Bansal.

Heads of other key committees like marketing and NCA board could not be decided due to lack of consensus.

Maharashtra Cricket Association, meanwhile, may go unrepresented at the AGM as their nominee and MCA president Ajay Shirke, a former BCCI treasurer, is away in the UK on a business trip. The MCA has sent a letter seeking replacement but it reached the BCCI office in Chennai at around 5.20 pm, well past the 4.00 pm deadline. The AGM will decide on the letter, intimating Abhay Apte as Shirke’s replacement, on Sunday.

Likely office bearers: President: N Srinivasan; Secretary: Sanjay Patel; Treasurer: Anirudh Chaudhary; Joint Secretary: Anurag Thakur; Vice-presidents: Ravi Savant (West), Rajiv Shukla (Central), SP Bansal (North), Shivlal Yadav (South), Chitrak Mitra (East).

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