Don’t blame cricketers alone for all the ills: Bindra

New Delhi, June 13 (IANS) Inderjit Singh Bindra, former president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has taken exception to the board imposing severe restrictions on players and by inference blaming them for all the ills in Indian cricket.

Bindra is livid with the present board dispensation and accused it of distorting even minutes of Monday’s working committee meeting here.

Bindra, who made one of his rare appearances at the last two working committee meetings after three years, is particularly unhappy with the way his friend Jagmohan Dalmiya tried to find fault with only the players for all the untoward happenings in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

“In the meeting Mr. Jagmohan Dalmiya had read out from a prepared text to state that the mobile telephones of players should be impounded before they enter the Dressing Rooms and also ask them to furnish their Bank Accounts and other Telephone numbers. He thundered that cheerleaders, after-match Parties and owners’ entry to the dug outs should be banned from both the IPL as well as the upcoming Champions League,” Bindra wrote on his blog.

“During the course of discussions, I observed that we should not give the impression that the players are solely responsible for all malefactions and corruption in the game. I suggested that we should start the clean-up operations at the very top and the Administrators should set the example by agreeing for public probity, thus standing up for ethical behaviour and higher moral standards,” he said.

Bindra says the top brass of the board have no moral right to preach to players when they themselves are facing charges of “conflict of interests”.

“The administrators, facing serious charges of conflict of interests, have no moral right to set standards for players and ask only them to be above board. Besides, Board’s working should be totally transparent. Its balance-sheet and Constitution should be put on its Website and there should be constant interaction with the cricket-loving public and accept tangible and worthwhile suggestions from them.”

Bindra said Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) chief C.P. Joshi, also a union minister, was also very forthright in demanding procedures to cleanse the administration and that it should start at the very top if it has to be honestly carried out.

In the blog on his personal website, Bindra hit out at BCCI joint secretary Anurag Thakur for fudging the minutes, saying the media release issued by him does not reflect what actually transpired at the meeting and it was a command performance to “cover up and perpetrate board’s illegalities and improprieties”.

“As usual the Media release of the June 8th Working Committee meeting of the Indian cricket board in Delhi does not reflect actual deliberations/discussion and decisions. Going by the contents of the release put out by the board’s joint secretary, it appears he was attending a meeting which was different from the one attended by a majority of members!”

Pointing out, what he calls, certain glaring discrepancies in the official release, he said the points dealt with are not accurate, they are actually misleading.

He said it was absolutely incorrect that the Working Committee had a hand in the appointments of Sanjay Patel as secretary and Ravi Sawant as treasurer.

“The Working Committee has not made any appointment. Sanjay Patel was already sitting on the Treasury bench and he glibly blurted out that he got his appointment letter from the President who had ‘very graciously agreed to step aside’. As regards Ravi Sawant, the Working Committee was of the view that it had no power to make a recommendation/ decision as it was obviously tutored to obviate public criticism about (former BCCI chief) N Srinivasan taking all decisions.”

Bindra points out that he had vehemently objected to the constitution of the probe panel by the IPL Operational Panel, but the majority view, despite his vehement objection, was that it was lawfully constituted and he blamed vice-president Arun Jaitley, an eminent lawyer, for it.

“It seems Arun Jaitley’s concept of post facto legitimising patent illegalities has led to the tutoring of minutes.”

Lamenting the fall in the standards of the board’s working, he said: “This certainly is not the institution which was once the pride and envy of not only the cricketing world but also the entire sports world for the way its visionary administrators conducted themselves.”

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