CHENNAI: This is no breaking news. But just for the record to say that Sourav Ganguly’s term as BCCI president ended on Sunday, following the cooling-off rule. Going by the book, he has to take a three-year break before he can return to cricket administration in India, be it in BCCI or in any state association. He can, however, hold a post in ICC if the BCCI clears him, with the support of a majority of other national boards.
As reported earlier, tenure ending doesn’t mean Ganguly will step aside. The BCCI has sought a revision of the cooling-off rule and that appeal is scheduled for hearing on August 17. Although no announcement has been made, there are indications that the board thinks the office-bearers can continue until the court passes an order. Not just Ganguly, secretary Jay Shah is also holding office under that presumption after his term got over in May.
There are voices in BCCI pointing out that the court doesn’t have to confirm when and if an official’s term is getting over. They become disqualified automatically after the last date. In the case of Ganguly, it was July 26 this year, considering that he became secretary of Cricket Association of Bengal on July 27 in 2014. He became president of the state body in September next year and the BCCI president in October, 2019. But this group is silent and unwilling to speak out in any official BCCI forum.
Importantly from the board’s point of view, there is another section — which happens to be in the majority — that thinks it should be the status quo as long as the court doesn’t say anything. In an encouraging sign for this group, the judges have not dismissed the BCCI’s review appeal. Curiously, very few of the board members have spoken about the practical difficulties of electing a new president and secretary under present circumstances. According to rules, a position vacated by an office-bearer has to be filled up in 45 days. This can only be done by conducting elections, which does not seem possible as long as movement restrictions are in place.