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HomeSPORTSBCCI president, secretary, office-bearers can have six-year stints: Supreme Court | Cricket...

BCCI president, secretary, office-bearers can have six-year stints: Supreme Court | Cricket News

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Cooling-off period to apply after 6 years at each level, but not if one switches level
NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday effected major amendments to the constitution of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) that would entitle its president, secretary and office-bearers to have two consecutive terms spanning six years in the board, even if they had served for three years in state associations immediately before entering BCCI.
A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Hima Kohli, thus, significantly altered the 2018 SC-approved BCCI constitution, which had mandated an office bearer to undergo three-year cooling off period after two consecutive terms in state association, or BCCI or cumulatively.
The earlier constitution had mandated a person, who was an office-bearer in a state association for three years, to cool off for three years after a succeeding three-year term in the BCCI. This clause was impeding further stints in the BCCI for its president Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah as both had worked as office-bearers in cricket associations of Bengal and Gujarat.
In December 2019, the AGM of BCCI had unanimously passed resolutions for amending the constitution and its consequent application for SC-approval had been pending for more than two and half years.
As per the amended cooling off clause approved by the SC, a person after two consecutive terms in a state association, will have to undergo a cooling period of three years before contesting elections for the state association. It said the cooling off period would not kick in if he chooses to switch to national level and contest elections for BCCI, where on being elected, he would be entitled to further two terms.
However, the SC maintained the earlier provision in the BCCI constitution to cap the back-to-back tenures of a person as a cricket administrator to a maximum of nine years. This means, if an office-bearer had six years tenure in a state association, he could have an additional three year tenure in the BCCI. Conversely, if a person had a three-year tenure in a state association, he could have a six-year tenure in BCCI, after which the mandatory three-year cooling off period would kick in.
The bench accepted the amendments proposed by BCCI through solicitor general Tushar Mehta after these were tweaked by amicus curiae Maninder Singh to make them conform to the judicial sentiments. These amendments would permit Ganguly and Shah to contest again for the posts they are holding.
The SC said these amendments would not disturb the rationale behind cooling off period – to prevent vested interest developing in a person and formation of clique within the cricket administrations.
It also lifted the bar on office bearers of other sports bodies from being part of the BCCI or state associations after it was pointed out that BCCI and state associations should not be deprived of the expertise of certain eminent cricketers, who are associated with other sports disciplines.
In another important amendment, the SC dropped the disqualification of public office holders from being part of cricket administration as it was pointed out that certain PSU officials play a huge role in nurturing cricket in many parts of the country. The disqualification is now restricted only to ministers and bureaucrats.
Accepting senior advocate Kapil Sibal’s suggestion for amending earlier clause disqualifying a person on a court framing of charges against him, the bench said from now on only those persons who have been convicted and sentenced to periods of imprisonment would be disqualified from contesting BCCI or state association elections.

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