BCCI secretary Ajay Shirke has ruffled a few feathers with his quotes during an interview with the Times of India, where he has categorically mentioned that the IPL 2017 is in danger of taking place. The fallout due to the ongoing tussle between the BCCI and the Lodha Committee is clearly visible, with first, the India – England series being affected, and now, potentially, the BCCI’s largest revenue generating source.
The tussle between the governing body of cricket in the country and the Supreme Court appointed committee has been at an impasse for a while, and is beginning to look like a farce. While the Lodha Committee has clearly laid down the guidelines for implementation, the BCCI continues to remain resolute and ignore them.
Speaking about the IPL, which is scheduled to take place in April 2017, Shirke said, “The 2017 Indian Premier League is in danger. We have no idea whether it's happening. How can it happen? We've already conveyed the details to the Committee on what needs to be done. There's a long list that we sent to them on the work that's pending. There's no time.” This would have to send alarm bells across the various stakeholders, and there is surely set to be an immediate reaction.
The Rajasthan Cricket Board, which was suspended in June 2014, when it disobeyed BCCI orders and went on to elect Lalit Modi as its President continues to be ignored by the BCCI. On being asked whether we would see a change in BCCI’s stance regarding the issue, where they have stopped paying the players, Shirke remained firm, saying, “We cannot pay them”.
In the midst of all this, India is set to host England for a 5-match Test series, beginning on the 9th of November at Rajkot. The Supreme Court had asked the BCCI President Anurag Thakur and Ajay Shirke to file affidavits of compliance regarding the Lodha recommendations of July 18, and failure to do so would result in the Supreme Court stalling the disbursement of funds.
With the BCCI yet to respond, the funds have been stalled and the BCCI have requested the England Cricket Board to pay for their own stay during their stay in India. Ajay Shirke spoke about this issue, clarifying, that the last day for the submittion of the affidavit is the 5th of November and that they still have time.
What is clear is that the Supreme Court is tired of the BCCI beating around the bush regarding the issue, and, they have gone on the offensive, taking measures that affect that Indian Cricket Team at large.
The BCCI will have to sort out these issues immediately. While they face the wrath of the Lodha Committee right now, failure to act on the issue soon, would mean they will face the wrath of the Indian public. And the public can be unforgiving.
Watch this space.