Starting with pay parity, Binny-led BCCI sets gold standards

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New Delhi: Under BCCI President Roger Binny’s leadership, Indian cricket has seen big developments since the newly-elected office-bearers took over in October 2022.

Pay parity for international cricketers was initiated, which means the match fees for women’s players are now at par with their male counterparts across formats.

Recently, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) led the way for the formation and selling of franchises as well as media rights for the upcoming Women’s Premier League, to be held in March 2023. It has made the five-team WPL the second-most valuable women’s sports league in the world, behind only the 12-team Women’s NBA in the US.

There was also the adoption and upgradation of a new digital interface, which would help the state associations approve and recommend to the BCCI release of fees to players digitally.

Also, an inaugural U-15 girls one-day tournament has been started from this season to unearth more hidden talent and nurture them to rise through the ranks in women’s cricket. The present structure of the BCCI does give an indication that the future looks bright for the sport in the country.

The BCCI also runs all the state cricket associations in the country.

The state associations, in turn, select their representatives who in turn elect the BCCI President — currently Binny, the 1983 World Cup-winning all-rounder.

The other key post-holders are Jay Shah, Secretary; Rajeev Shukla, Vice-President; Devajit Saikia, Joint Secretary; and Ashish Shelar, Treasurer.

In 2013, when the Indian Premier League (IPL) was mired in spot-fixing allegations, the Supreme Court had intervened and put in place the Committee of Administrators (CoA), which would run day-to-day affairs of the BCCI and implement the recommendations of the Justice R.M. Lodha panel.

The CoA was led by ex-CAG Vinod Rai, along with former India women’s cricketer Diana Edulji as one of the members in the four-member panel, which would eventually become three.

It ran for 33 months before an elected panel of office-bearers with former India captain with Sourav Ganguly as President took over.

The term of every BCCI office-bearer is three years and no person can be an office-bearer for more than three terms in all.

An office-bearer who has held any post for two consecutive terms either in the state or in BCCI is not eligible to contest elections after completing a three-year cooling off period, which came in via Lodha Committee Recommendations.

The President has powers to preside in all meetings of the General Body and the Apex Council. He is also one of the three persons to sign audited annual accounts and other financial statements made by the BCCI. In his absence, all these functions are carried out by the Vice-President.

The Secretary is in charge of keeping minutes of the AGM, SGM, Apex Council and other committee meetings. He is also in charge of maintaining the records, convening all meetings and circulating the statements made by the treasurer.

The Joint Secretary has to assist the Secretary in all matters related to functioning of the BCCI.

The Treasurer has to keep account of all subscriptions and donations received and expended by the BCCI and prepare statements of all accounts. He is also in charge of placing annual balance sheets, statements of accounts by the BCCI and the annual budget too, apart from coordinating with the CEO/Treasurer to see if the funds sent to the members are being fully utilised.

In December 1928, the BCCI was formed. R.E. Grant Govan, a New Delhi-based British industrialist, was elected as its first President and Anthony de Mello as Secretary. Presently, BCCI is an autonomous body and does not receive any grants or fundings from the Centre.

As per the BCCI constitution, all powers of governance, management and decision making “shall vest” in the General Body, which shall also have the power “to collect funds and wherever necessary borrow, with or without security, for purposes of the BCCI and to raise loans with or without security and to purchase, redeem or pay off any such activity”.

The General Body also has the powers to frame, alter, amend or add to Laws of Cricket in India wherever desirable or necessary, direct and control the governing council; lend oversight and assistance to organising IPL and ensure that interests of players as well as franchises are protected.

Many politicians from multiple political parties have held different positions in the BCCI. But after Lodha Committee’s pathbreaking guidelines, which barred an incumbent minister or Member of Parliament from holding office in the BCCI or in the state associations, politicians found an alternate way to bypass it, by placing their sons, brothers on the posts.

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( With inputs from )

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