N Srinivasan will maintain arms length distance from probe: Arun Jaitley

Arun Jaitley is vice-president of BCCI from North Zone © IANS

New Delhi: Jun 2, 2013

Senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Vice-President Arun Jaitley on Sunday said N Srinivasan will maintain an “arms length distance” from the probe against his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan in the sixth edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) on betting charges.

“There will be an enquiry which will be on, the charges being criminal will be investigated. There are no charges against him (Srinivasan). We are not going into this matter. Now, if you step aside and discharge no function, then you maintain a complete arms length distance from the cricket administration which he has to maintain,” said Jaitley.

Bowing to all-round pressure, Srinivasan on Sunday agreed to “step aside” as BCCI President under a compromise formula that brought back former Chief Jagmohan Dalmiya as head of a four-member “interim arrangement”, more than a fortnight after the spot-fixing scandal rocked Indian cricket.

“Srinivisan will be at arms length distance till such time the enquiry is over. The entire administration will be run by the Working Committee of the Board. Dalmiya will get decisions ratified by the Working Committee of the Board. The committee will run the day-to-day affairs of the BCCI,” Jaitley told Times Now.

Jaitley said the decision taken by the Working Committee in Chennai will help the BCCI restore its lost credibility.

“I had shared the unease of every cricket lover in the last two weeks. Under this management, at least you will have a Board with some credibility and since the Board has taken this decision, I thought we must give it a chance.

“In September, the BCCI will have its elections. The probe into the matter (spot-fixing and betting) will also take place. Dalmiya is an arrangement, he has to continue till such time this probe goes on,” he said.

Jaitley said his name was also suggested by some members of the Emergent Working Committee for the job but he refused the offer citing political commitments.

“There were several suggestions which were made, some members suggested my name, which I was unwilling to take because I am occupied somewhere else. I thought it was only fair that two of the people which I suggested who I thought bear this responsibility — one of course Shashank Manohar because he has impeccable credentials.”

The other one was Dalmiya, a very senior member and great lover of the game. In the overall circumstances, Dalmiya will look after those responsibilities as an interim arrangement and get them ratified by the Board,” he said.

Asked about who will represent India at the ICC, Jaitley said, “I think Dalmiya and Working Committee will decide that. This is the express decision which has been taken today.”

Jaitley also clarified the air on Srinivasan’s role in the BCCI with some media outlets reporting that the incumbent had his way in the meeting.

“The conditions which have been appearing today, conditions which have been imposed or insisted upon by Srinivasan which were appearing the media, I would like to clarify no such condition was insisted nor being accepted by the WC members,” he said.

Jaitley also urged Secretary Sanjay Jagdale and Treasurer Ajay Shirke, who have resigned from the posts a couple of days ago, to rethink their decision and get back to the Board.

“My good advice to both of them would be that the presence of these two gentlemen would add to the BCCI’s credibility.”

He, however, refused to comment on former BCCI president and Punjab Cricket Association chief IS Bindra’s allegations that Jaitley has had his way in the meeting.

The Working Committee decision came under immediate fire from dissidents including Bindra, Ajay Shirke, Kirti Azad and Lalit Modi camp who variously described it as “worse than match-fixing”, “sham” and a “foredrawn conclusion”.

“I would not like to respond to what Mr Bindra had said. He is a senior cricket administrator and I respect his views.”

He said the credibility of the game suffered a serious blow ever since the arrest of three Rajasthan Royals players, inclusing India Test pacer S Sreesanth, and Srinivasan’s son-in-law in betting related charges during IPL 6.

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