Questioning the maintainability of a public interest litigation petition filed in the Madras High Court (Madurai Bench) seeking a direction to the Union Sports Ministry to take over the cricket administration in the country, the BCCI has prayed to the court to dismiss the plea.
In his counter-affidavit, BCCI honorary secretary Sanjay Patel opposed the PIL filed by an advocate saying it was done only to seek publicity without any credible evidence on the part of the national cricket body or the IPL Governing Council. It was purely based on media reports on spots fixing allegations in the IPL.
The petitioner had alleged that the BCCI had failed in its duty to administer cricket and function in a transparent manner.
However, Patel submitted that the BCCI’s annual accounts were hosted on its website and also duly filed with the Registrar of Societies as per the statutory provisions of the TN Societies Registration Act. Besides it had filed its annual tax returns. The BCCI had enjoyed tax exemption until recently based on a circular issued by the Income Tax Department in 1984 describing promotion of sports and games to be a charitable activity. The IT Department’s decision to withdraw the tax exemption enjoyed by the BCCI until recently had nothing to do with administration of the game, Patel claimed.
Referring to the IPL spot fixing scandal, the affidavit said that a Commission of Inquiry has been constituted to probe it and action will be taken on its final report.
Contending that the BCCI had not acting against law, he said the petitioner had failed to furnish evidence of any wrong doing by the spo-rts body to substantiate the charges. Therefore, the writ was not maintainable and deserved to be dismissed, he submitted.
A bench comprising Justices S Rajeswaran and T Mathivanan adjourned the case to July 9.