In a tussle between the BCCI and the Lodha panel, it seems the Lodha panel has blinked when it comes to disbursing funds for the ongoing India-New Zealand series. After the BCCI had raised the possibility of cancelling the ongoing series, retired Supreme Court Justice RM Lodha clarified that the committee was never against the disbursement of money by the BCCI for matches and other routine affairs (day-to-day functioning of the BCCI).
Speaking to Times Now, the former Supreme Court judge clarified that they had asked Yes Bank and Bank of Maharashtra to stop the disbursement of funds to state associations, but not for day-to-day affairs, thus ensuring that hosting matches won’t be affected.
He further went on to clarify on the matter and said, “We have not frozen their accounts. We have directed them (the banks) to not disburse funds to the state associations. This is misinterpreting the email that we have sent to them”.
As per reports in the Indian media, the Committee gave directions to Yes Bank to freeze the BCCI’s accounts. There has been a reluctance on the part of the Board to implement the Lodha committee suggestions and the panel considered the inaction of the Board as a violation, which included the Fund Disbursement policy that was to be framed by 30th September 2016.
BCCI and Lodha Committee – an ongoing tiff
The BCCI and the Lodha committee have been exchanging blows in public regarding the email sent out by the committee to the BCCI. Unnamed officials of the BCCI have threatened to cancel the ongoing Test series stating, “We have no option other than to call off the India-New Zealand series as our banks have decided to freeze BCCI accounts. We don’t want India to be humiliated in front of the world”.
However, a clarification mail on the operation of accounts held by BCCI would be sent to the board, as reported by The Hindu. The ongoing tiff though hasn’t affected the preparation of the New Zealand squad for the upcoming third Test in Indore which begins on 8 October.
As reported by Reuters, a New Zealand Cricket spokesman spoke of no communication by the BCCI to cancel the ongoing series and would not be drawn into the matter, instead stating that it was the first time that they were hearing about the cancellation of the series.
New Zealand were defeated by India in the second Test held at the Eden Gardens on Monday to give the home side an unassailable lead of 2-0 in the three-match Test series. However, they still have the one-day series to look forward to as they look to regain some lost pride.