India head coach Ravi Shastri has cleared the air regarding his alleged rift with BCCI president Sourav Ganguly, saying that he has nothing but respect for the former India captain and that rumours of their differences is “brilliant chaat and bhelpuri for the media.”

Shastri and Ganguly did not see eye to eye during the latter’s tenure at the Cricket Advisory Committee. When India were hunting for their next coach in 2016, Ganguly, along with Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman were tasked with the responsibility of picking a contender for the post, one of which was Shastri, having earlier serves as the team director.

As it turned out, Ganguly was absent during Shastri’s presentation over a video call, with the former allrounder terming the episode disrespectful. In response, Ganguly said he was hurt by Shastri’s comments and eventually Anil Kumble was appointed coach of the team. Shastri, was re-instated after Kumble and Virat Kohli’s fallout and was re-appointed for a second time in August earlier this year.

“He [Ganguly] took over Indian cricket at the most troubled times. You needed the faith of the people to come back. What he has done as a cricketer… I have the utmost respect. If people think I don’t respect that, to hell with them. As far as the Sourav-Shastri game that goes, that’s brilliant chaat and bhelpuri for the media,” Shastri said during the India Today Conclave.

As for Ganguly, the BCCI President had cleared his stance on the matter last week, calling it mere speculation.

“That’s why it is speculation. I don’t have an answer to it [speculations]. It’s pretty simple. It’s about performance. You perform, you continue or else somebody else would take over. It’s a simple formula,” he had said.