Guha raises conflict of interest issue
Noted historian Ramchandra Guha, who quit from the Supreme Court-appointed BCCI Committee of Administrators (CoA), has raised the issue of conflict of interest against several cricket legends and lashed out at the preferential treatment meted out to some of them including Sunil Gavaskar, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Rahul Dravid.
In his resignation letter addressed to CoA head Vinod Rai, Guha has questioned former India skipper-turned-commentator Gavaskar's conflict of interest besides raising fingers at former India batting stalwart and current India-A and Under-19 coach Dravid's association with Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Delhi Daredevils.
"No person under contract with an India team or with the NCA (National Cricket Academy) should be allowed to moonlight for an IPL team too," Guha's letter read.
"BCCI in its carelessness (or otherwise) might have drafted coaching/support staff contracts to allow this dual loyalty business. But while it might be narrowly legal as per existing contracts, it is unethical, and antithetical to team spirit, leading to much jealousy and heart-burn among the coaching staff as a whole. This practice is plainly wrong, as well as antithetical to the interests of Indian cricket," he added.
"The BCCI management is too much in awe of these superstars to question their violation of norms and procedures. For their part, BCCI office-bearers like to enjoy discretionary powers, so that the coaches or commentators they favour are indebted to them and do not ever question their own mistakes or malpractices."
Questioning the conflict of interest involving the superstars of Indian cricket, Guha wrote: "The question of conflict of interest, which had lain unaddressed ever since the Committee began its work, and which I have been repeatedly flagging since I joined.
"For instance, the BCCI has accorded preferential treatment to some national coaches by giving them 10 month contracts for national duty, thus allowing them to work as IPL coaches/mentors for the remaining two months.
Commenting on Dhoni being awarded a Grade A contract by the national cricket board despite the stumper bidding adieu to Test cricket, Guha wrote: "Unfortunately, this superstar syndrome has also distorted the system of Indian team contracts."