former SCA president Niranjan Shah as 'Special Invitee' in the committee to study Lodha Panel Reforms    Getty Images
former SCA president Niranjan Shah as ‘Special Invitee’ in the committee to study Lodha Panel Reforms Getty Images

Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) threw a rabbit out of the hat a few days ago, including former Saurashtra Cricket Association (SCA) President Niranjan Shah in the newly-formed committee to study the Lodha recommendations in depth. Shah, who is aged 73 and stands disqualified as per Lodha recommendations, has been associated with the SCA since the last 30 years. Shah, along with seven other members, will provide their inputs and suggestions to other administrators in understanding the panel recommendations.

“I don’t understand this hue and cry over the age limit of the BCCI office-bearers. If our president (Pranab Mukherjee, who is 81) can work beyond 70, what is so wrong about BCCI officials working beyond that age limit. As long as you are fit, you can work even till the time you are alive. I call this age discrimination (what is being proposed by the Lodha panel),” Shah told PTI today.

CAB president Sourav Ganguly will lead the special panel, who is himself not eligible to be state or BCCI Administrator as per Lodha recommendations.

Speaking on ‘One state one vote policy’, Shah added, “Personally I am not against the one-state one-vote. But how can you take away the voting rights of one of the oldest state associations in the country. The same applies for Mumbai cricket. They have done so much for Indian cricket. We have no problems with voting rights given to a new member but voting rights of West Zone should stay as it is a major contributor,”

Shah is hopeful that Supreme Court will consider reviewing the reforms.

“We are hopeful that the interim applications filed by 18 state associations can lead to a positive outcome,” he concluded.