Cricket

Players doing commentary alongside other roles can lead to conflict of interest, says BCCI ethics officer

BCCI logo is seen at its headquarters in Mumbai.

BCCI logo is seen at its headquarters in Mumbai.   | Photo Credit: AFP

Jain said Ganguly and Laxman can only choose one of the multiple roles they are performing at the moment.

BCCI ethics officer and former Supreme Court judge D.K. Jain on Friday said former or active players commentating during tournaments could also amount to conflict of interest (COI) as ‘one person one vote’ is the soul of Lodha reforms.

After passing the order on Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman’s COI, Jain said the two famed cricketers can only choose one of the multiple roles they are performing at the moment.

Ganguly is commentating in the World Cup, heads Cricket Association of Bengal, is a Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) member and advisor of IPL franchise Delhi Capitals.

Laxman too is commentating, is mentor of Sunrisers Hyderabad and a CAC member. Last month, Sachin Tendulkar, who is a Mumbai Indians Icon, was cleared of COI after he withdrew from the CAC.

“In Sachin’s case it (COI) did not arise as he withdrew from CAC. In these two cases (Ganguly and Laxman), I have given them options, they can decide. I have only said that they can hold one post of their choice,” Jain told PTI.

“It is for them to decide, how best they can serve the game of cricket. I have only interpreted the Lodha reforms for future guidance, I have not done anything extraordinary. The soul of Lodha committee recommendations is one person one post, I have just tried to bring it out in writing. Now it is for BCCI to enforce it.”

Tendulkar, Laxman and Ganguly had contested COI allegations then.

However, with the ethics officer ruling that both Ganguly and Laxman have to choose between their roles including commentary, it could lead to many former and active cricketers falling under COI.

Tendulkar too is commentating in the World Cup but the complaint against him was filed over his dual role of Mumbai Indians Icon and CAC member.

Jain, who was appointed by the Supreme Court in February, also touched on the subject of active players such as Robin Uthappa and Irfan Pathan doing commentary at the ongoing World Cup.

“There may be some fallout (of this order). Based on this order, there could complaints against active players also. So they can apply their minds and be ready for that situation.

“I have not barred anybody (from commentating), I have only decided what COI means as per the BCCI constitution. Rule 38 of the constitution bars one from holding of multiple posts at one point of time. I have done nothing else, I have only interpreted the constitution.

“It is for the players to see whether it would apply to them or not. It was only dealing with these two cases (Laxman and Ganguly). For other players, whether it would apply to them or not apply to them, it is for them to apply their mind. They can read the order and act accordingly.”

However, it is for the BCCI to enforce Jain’s order.

“It is the first time I have interpreted the rules (in the constitution). I don’t know whether it will be accepted or not. Anyone wants to challenge it, can challenge it. One person one post is the concept of Justice Lodha also. It is not only applicable to the cricketers, it may apply to officer bearers also.

“I have only given interpretation of rule 38.4 of BCCI constitution and the definition of COI in the rule itself, which everyone was ignoring,” Jain added.

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Printable version | Feb 25, 2020 1:22:39 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/players-doing-commentary-alongside-other-roles-can-lead-to-conflict-of-interest-says-bcci-ethics-officer/article28100009.ece

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