CAG on Wednesday (July 8) Filed An Application With The Supreme Court For BCCI:
The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) lodged an application with the Supreme Court on Wednesday (8 July) to suspend the BCCI Apex Council and the IPL Board of Governors. Recently, the incumbent CAG delegate in the BCCI, Alka Rehani Bharadwaj, raised the question of the eligibility of office holders to attend the Apex Council meeting scheduled for 17 July.
Alka Rehani Bharadwaj’s email which was accessed by a leading sports website highlighted the tenure of BCCI Secretary Jay Shah, which included challenging his qualifications. Under the new constitution of the Board, those who have served a six-year term must serve a mandatory cooling-off period. Even as Shah was elected as Gujarat ‘s Joint Secretary in 2013, it is not clear when his term of office is over.
“The President / Joint Secretary of the BCCI (who is likely to serve as Secretary of the BCCI post after vacation) must also ensure that only members are present at the 4th Apex Council meeting, competent under the Constitution,” Bharadwaj wrote in an email to the members of the Apex Council.
“Any decision on this matter must, please, be backed up by facts and legally supported. It is repeated only to ensure conformity with the accepted Constitution of the Honourable Supreme Court.”
The CAG, which was integrated into the BCCI Constitution pursuant to the Lodha Recommendation with a view to providing effective governance safeguards, has now filed an application where it asks the Supreme Court to amend its functioning.
In its report, accessed by Cricbuzz, the CAG states: ‘The Apex Board & the Board of Governors shall be responsible for the governance functions needed to take management decisions of an administrative nature. While the expertise of CAG is in financial transparency, the current position played by the CAG candidate in BCCI is totally different from their area of expertise.
“The CAG nominee being a member of the Apex Council or the IPL GC is just one member, and because decisions are made by a majority, the inclusion of the CAG nominee as a member of the Apex Council or the IPL GC does not serve the objectives.”
It further said, “Over 120 complaints received alleging violation of BCCI or State Agreements, complaints by a variety of persons frequently run into dozens of pages. Typically, these complaints are of the form of disputes and may or may not pose particular issues of commission and omission.
Overloading the officer who is a candidate in the BCCI / State Association, the districts of his core role in the CAG office.
“CAG has been exempt from carrying out any audit, or from being the auditor of last resort, or even from consulting any authority; if the audit of BCCI performed by the private CA / accounting firm is fair, fair and rational … the appointment of a CAG representative to the BCCI Apex Council, IPL GC, Apex Councils / Managing Committee of State Associations could be reconsidered.”
Finally, the CAG requests that it continue to audit BCCI in a timely manner or that it may select a panel of auditors under its oversight to continue the governance measures under the Lodha reforms.
A member of the CAG was included in the BCCI Apex Council as part of the Lodha Recommendation. “The BCCI did not follow the modern standards of open governance, which are all the more relevant when conducting these far-reaching public functions,” reported the Justice Lodha Committee report.
“The Working Committee shall be composed entirely of members , making its operation a closed-door affair with no involvement of actors or audit experts to serve as governance controls.
And as a remedy, a member of the CAG had been suggested to be included in the apex committee. “The CAG candidate also brings financial and audit expertise that would add much-needed transparency to the BCCI ‘s finances.” The guidelines were adopted less than a year ago and the current leaders took care of them.