Some remorse but BCCI unlikely to relent on key Lodha panel reforms

Sanjjeev K Samyal, Mumbai: As the stand-off between the Supreme Court and the Board of Control for Cricket

in India (BCCI) continued, speculation was rife over why the Apex Court gave the cricket officials 10 more days to fall in line. Whether it was to not take a chance with the third Test starting on Saturday, in case there’s a dramatic, last-minute sabotage, is anybody’s guess.
The BCCI top brass has got a lucky break to initiate the process of administrative reforms in the Indian cricket set-up. But from the look of things, the officials are in no mood to change their stance.
Officially, the top two of the Board, President Anurag Thakur and Secretary Ajay Shirke, will be busy with the International Cricket Council (ICC) meetings in Cape Town from October 10 to 14. However, even if they manage the time, they are neither in a position nor do they have the inclination to alter the decisions taken at the BCCI Special General Meeting at the start of the month.
Determined stand
A consensus through voting was reached over each recommendation of the SC-appointed panel for reforms and they are expected to stick to their stance at the next hearing on October 17.
BCCI has said it is ready to adopt the points on which the members have voted on, and hence the Court has sent out a final warning to the state units. They are adamant mainly on one state, one vote, and cooling-off period.Vidarbha Cricket Association has been fine with relinquishing its vote but the other state officials from West Zone say it’s a step they can’t take of their free will. “Even if we agree to all the points, I cannot be the official who gave away the voting right of my association,” said the head of a state unit. “If the members of my association vote for it then fine, but I can’t be the person who reduced them from a full member to an associate member.”
It was widely expected that the SC would give its order on Thursday and appoint a panel in place of the BCCI officials to carry out the reforms. The Court, however, decided to leave the decision for a future date.A BCCI member though admitted they could have handled the matter better. He felt the SGM to discuss the recommendations should have been convened much earlier and blamed the previous regime. “We should have discussed the recommendations and carried out the voting immediately and then got into a dialogue with the Lodha Committee; we could have requested them to relook at the points which were not practical. We could have also put an application to the Chief Justice. I am sure a middle path could have been worked out. It’s become too late. We were not guided properly.”
Sports lawyer Vidushpat Singhania said: “They have given the BCCI one more chance and they want to verify certain facts.”
Sports lawyer Rahul Mehra felt the BCCI may have something up its sleeve. “(It seems) they know they will be rescued by a ‘big brother’ in the central government, otherwise an ordinary citizen can’t fight the Supreme Court. They have no respect for the rule of law and no respect for the dignity of the judiciary. They will look to get a lame sports bill passed.”