Despite the Mumbai Police charge-sheeting and slapping serious charges against his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan for betting and cheating in Indian Premier League-6, the Indian Cricket Board president N Srinivasan remains adamant as ever. And according to senior board officials, he would likely be re-elected as the president during the Board’s AGM on September 29.
Understandably, the clamour for Srinivasan’s ouster has only grown since the Police named Meiyappan in the list of accused. Many even reckoned that Srinivasan is on a sticky wicket.
But one is never certain about the dynamics in the BCCI, and contrary to these assumptions, Srinivasan’s prospects of another term (one-term) remains unstained. “First, Meiyappan has only been accused and he is innocent until proven guilty. Then, there have been no charges of fixing leveled against him. So I don’t think Srinivasan is under any threat,” a top BCCI official remarked.
Moreover, the issue pertains solely to the IPL Governing Council and not the BCCU per say. “It’s a matter of IPL Governing Council and not the BCCI. Srinivasan has nothing to do with it. Also, the Mumbai Police have chargesheeted Meiyappan and not Srinivasan. So why should he feel threatened? Also, Meiyappan has not been convicted but only charged,” another high-profile BCCI official seconded.
Srinivasan, who has endured a fair deal of trial post Meiyappan’s detainment in June, himself is fairly convinced of him getting re-elected. “I will chair the meeting as President and in spite of what you (the media) feel, I may get elected,” he affirmed.
He was more categorical when further queried about Meiyappan’s fate. “It is up to him to defend his position, it has got nothing to do with me. For your information, the matter is before the Honourable Supreme Court and I am not going to comment on the matter, as it is still sub-judice. I have not seen the chargesheet yet. I will ask the BCCI secretary to take legal advice if needed,” he said.
If in case the anti-Srinivasan nexus lobbies for his ouster in the AGM, he still has the unwavering support of cricket associations in the South. “Whether he has the moral right or not to continue as the president is an entirely different issue. But the fact is he would most likely be re-elected because it is the turn of the associations in the South to vote. They just need to nominate him and he will be through,” pointed out former BCCI president AC Muthiah.
The September-29 meeting, many deem, would mark the official return of Srinivasan, who has stepped aside on June 2. But he was also set to resume charges after the two-member IPL probe panel cleared Meiyappan of any wrongdoing but Mumbai High Court’s verdict ruling the constitution of the panel illegal deferred his comeback.