Much waters have flown over the BCCI working committee meeting that some described as ‘farce’ and others labeled as ‘inconclusive’, but what came through crystal clear was the excruciating recalcitrance of the (former?) BCCI president N Srinivasan to pay heed to popular resentment and resign from the disgraced board. The India Cements kingpin and the owner of the redoubtable Chennai Super Kings has barely consented to ‘step aside’ while the probes into the IPL spot-fixing scandal take place, which include interrogating his own son-in-law, the former ‘team principal’ of CSK, Gurunath Meiyappan. In Srinivasan’s temporary withdrawal from the all-powerful cricket board, which at last displayed deep schisms that had been splintering it from within, Jagmohan Dalmiya will be taking over as the interim chief, and will be ensuring, at least for the public eye, that the probes into Meiyappan, and others involved in the latest instalment of the IPL-gate, are conducted without interference from the Chennai strongman. Nevertheless, the fact that the BCCI, despite Srinivasan’s overt defiance and continued undermining of public rage, managed to scrape through a temporary solution and forced him to step aside on moral grounds, is a reason to cheer and be relieved, even though the arrangement is regrettably provisional.
However, what can be called the silver lining in a horizon that is otherwise replete with blackest and heaviest of clouds is the moral uprightness of the two officials of the board, Ajay Shirke, the treasurer and Sanjay Jagdale, the secretary, whose dual resignations displayed an exemplary commitment to the causes of integrity and sincerity within the tainted sport and its highly corrupted administration. N Srinivasan, on the other hand, has been behaving like a petulant child, who, mulishly enough, wants to have it all despite indications to the contrary. Moreover, reports of his setting down conditions before he stepped aside pointed to the fact that he had been scheming to pull the strings of both the board and the investigation, intending to have remote control of the BCCI, but such plans were laid to rest with the resignation of IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla. It is extremely unfortunate that offices of such eminence have become nothing but instruments of wielding absolute power over the billion-dollar IPL, roping in money and other benefits, while occupying the posts. Moreover, Srinivasan’s demand that he still represents India in the International Cricket Council (ICC) bespeaks the utter contempt that the man has towards the laws of the land, and how blinded he is by his single-minded pursuit of authority by hook or crook. If Shirke and Jagdale are the saving grace of the BCCI, both of whom might now be reinstated in the sporting board, it is Srinivasan’s unimaginable derision towards moral and ethical dimensions of both the game and the administration that stands out in glaring contrast to the resolute honesty of the two men. Such a man must not represent India in the ICC because if he does, Indian cricket is set to lose even the crumbs of credibility that it’s now left with.