The embattled Board chief does not have too many options before him

With the clamour for his resignation growing after the Supreme Court’s observations on Tuesday, a source close to N. Srinivasan said the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president would not arrive at any hasty decision.

“He will make full use of the two days before the Apex Court meets again,” he said. The indications are that the Board chief will not resign as of now.

Yet, as the day progressed, it became evident that Srinivasan did not have too many options before him. The top court had been distressed by the affairs in the IPL.

Srinivasan was involved in a series of meetings with close aides here to take stock of the situation. The BCCI source told The Hindu: “It is not necessary that he has to announce his decision either today or tomorrow. He can give it in his submission to the court on March 27.”

On his part, Srinivasan said, “I would like to study the order.”

There were reports that the BCCI vice-president from the South Zone, Shivlal Yadav, could be a strong contender for the post of the interim Board president if Srinivasan steps down. “Being the senior most vice-president from the South Zone, I am ready for the challenge,” Yadav said.

However, whichever name comes up will have to be ratified by an emergency general body meeting of the Board.

On who will run the show if Srinivasan is away, BCCI vice-president Ravi Sawant said, “That’s a million-dollar question. The BCCI is a perpetual organisation. Nobody is indispensable.”

Yadav said, “I think the working committee will debate with the help of legal counsel on the pros and cons, and necessary remedial measures. This is not the time to indulge in a blame game but respect the systems that are in place.”

Former India captain Bishan Singh Bedi said, “I find it astonishing that had it not been for the Supreme Court’s ‘nauseating’ bouncer, we were going to keep quiet. I am aghast with our cricket administration.”

Former Board treasurer Ajay Shirke said, “It’s a very sad day for the BCCI. Making a statement that Meiyappan was a cricket enthusiast was a blatant oversimplification. I definitely feel that the BCCI has to introspect a lot and get out of the dream that ‘we are so powerful, we can do no wrong.’”

The others were more cautious. T.C. Mathews, member of the IPL Governing Council, said: “It’s only an observation. The BCCI will submit its response on the 27th. We will wait till then.”

Former India batsman Mohinder Amarnath said, “No one is bigger than the game. No individual in the country can defy the Supreme Court.”

Justice Mukul Mudgal said, “It will not be proper to make any statement or conclusions at the moment. We must await the Board’s response.”

The International Cricket Council (ICC) did not want to comment on the issue. “It is an internal matter of the BCCI,” it said.

(with inputs from New Delhi and Hyderabad)

This article has been corrected for a factual error.

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