Jagmohan Dalmiya begins another innings at BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) after a ten year break. He replaces the supremo of the sport’s world - Narayanswami Srinivasan, who was forced to quit after a corruption scandal and also after the Supreme Court pointed out a conflict of interest. The Supreme Court has barred Srinivasan from contesting for the post of BCCI chief, though he is allowed to cast a vote in the election. The seventy four year old Dalmiya was the consensus candidate for the various warring factions within the BCCI, namely the factions led by Srinivasan and Sharad Pawar. He had been ousted from the post in 2005 after holding the position for about ten years without interruption. He has also been managing the day to day affairs of the BCCI after Srinivasan temporarily stepped aside in 2013.
Dalmiya filed his nomination from the National Cricket Club in Kolkata and was supported by four east zone associations. It is the turn of the east zone to nominate a president for a three year term. And by getting the support of the east zone, he has ensured that a candidate from the zone only is nominated and not any body from outside the zone.
The election of Dalmiya to the post has an implication for the elections to all the other nine posts within the BCCI. These were no contest affairs in the last ten years or so, but now – all the nine posts – president, five vice presidents, secretary, treasurer and joint secretary – were contested. The Srinivasan group won four out of the five posts for which elections were held. The Pawar Group’s Thakur won the post of Secretary. Running the BBCI will be a stormy affair in the near future, with a clash occurring as early as the Annual General Meeting (AGM) to be held shortly.
The position of Chairman of the meeting will be crucial, as the Chairman will have an extra casting vote. If the Chairman also has voting rights as the nominee of an association, that would make it three votes. Shivlal Yadav chaired the Annual General Meeting as he was the person appointed by the Supreme Court for the purpose and appointing him would make the point that they were still a force to reckon with. Any other appointment may simply invite further litigation. While coming to a choice of Chairman, the Pawar group is not likely to forget that Dalmiya used his casting vote as Chairman in 2004 to vote against Pawar. In the latest AGM, Yadav used his casting vote in favour of Choudhary for the post of Joint Secretary. The real blow to the Srinivasan camp came from the defeat of Sanjay Patel by Anurag Thakur for the post of Secretary.
Srinivasan is the current head of the ICC (International Cricket Council), a post held earlier by Dalmiya for three years from 1997 to 2000. It remains to be seen if Srinivasan’s ouster from the post of the BCCI chief will have any implication for his post of ICC chief.