MUMBAI: Former India opener Lalchand Rajput on Monday filed a petition against the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) to the cricket body’s newly-appointed Ethics Officer-cum-Ombudsman Justice Vijaya Tahilramani regarding the dissolution of the MCA’s previous Cricket Improvement Committee (CIC) on Conflict of Interest grounds.
Rajput was the chairman of the CIC, which included former India players Sameer Dighe and Raju Kulkarni. Before its removal, the previous CIC was at loggerheads with the office-bearers of the MCA on the issue of appointment of the coach of the Mumbai team. Requesting “for immediate interim actions till the matter is fairly heard and resolved, Rajput has urged Tahilramani to “reinstate the CIC which was dissolved on February 18, 2021 till the upcoming AGM, declare the appointment of the new CIC invalid till the next AGM and put a stay on the appointments of selectors, coaches and support staff for Mumbai in any category .”
“The secretaries of the respondent wrote a letter dated February 18 to the members of the CIC to say that the CIC has been dissolved. The timing of the letter leaves no doubt that this was illegal and unconstitutional on the part of the secretaries, who had no authority to remove the CIC, particularly for the cause mentioned to dissolve as a conflict of interest.”
In his petition, Rajput has said that “No conflict of interest has been pointed out or explicitly mentioned in the letter (by the office-bearers to the CIC, communicating the decision to dissolve the CIC) dated February 18, 2021. The letter is silent on the nature of conflict, and the petitioner states that in fact there were none.”
Rajput has stated in his petition that “the secretaries have no power to decide conflict of interest. The power and authority as per constitution clause no 39 is given to the Ethics officer.”
Rajput has said “the appointment of CIC as per constitution is done in every AGM as per clause 8 (3) 9g),” and that his committee “was appointed for a period of three years by the MCA.”
He has also alleged that “the MCA secretaries started interfering in all the selection processes (junior and senior).” “The selectors are willing to testify for the interference, for eg, the inclusion of two players in 20 selected by senior team selectors for the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2021 after the BCCI allowed 22 players due to covid instead of 20.”