The long-drawn-out conversation around the conflict of interest in Indian cricket finally found a verdict. Indian cricket board's ethics officer, who was adjudicating the conflict of interest case involving Sourav Ganguly, VVS Laxman and Sachin Tendulkar has ruled that the cricketers will have to abide by the one-post-at-a-time clause which is mentioned in the Supreme Court-approved BCCI constitution.
Now, this statement will have repercussions all around the circuit as it will force many former and current players to abide by the rule. Sunil Gavaskar, Harbhajan Singh, Anil Kumble, Sanjay Manjrekar, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir and Irfan Pathan, among others have been doing commentary in the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup. While many of the aforementioned players are in England, there are others who are doing commentary from the Mumbai studios of the host broadcaster.
This rule will be applicable to all irrespective of the contract
As things stand now, this order means that players, pundits, and officials will have to choose between being with IPL teams, cricket administration, coaching role or commentary. Also, this rule will apply to all, irrespective of whether they are contracted with the BCCI or any of the host broadcasters.
Many players, current and former, have toggled between commentary stints, playing for IPL franchises, and other professional assignments which include coaching and administration.
As per the new BCCI constitution which is uploaded on its website, the "conflict of interest" clause is as explained under rule 38 (4).
It states, "It is clarified that no individual may occupy more than one of the following posts at a single point of time except where prescribed under these rules: a) player (current), (b) selector/member of the cricket committee, (c) team official, (d) commentator, (e) match official, (f) administrator/office-bearer... (p) owner of a cricket academy."
Sanjeev Gupta, the man who had filed the complaint, welcomed the order and wrote to the ethics officer: "Your order has set the precedent/benchmark for every individual associated with the BCCI, every state unit, IPL, TV broadcaster, every BCCI member, BCCI administrators, state unit administrators, etc to comply with the law of the land."
As per an official: A few personalities are occupying multiple posts, which leads to concentration of power. To end it is one of the main thrusts of the Lodha Committee reforms.