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Sachin Tendulkar blames cricket board for conflict-of-interest imbroglio Sachin Tendulkar blames cricket board for conflict-of-interest imbroglio

Sachin Tendulkar blames cricket board for conflict-of-interest imbroglio

May 06, 2019

In a rare outburst against the cricket board, Sachin Tendulkar has denied he is in a conflict of interest in his dual role as member of the Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) and a Mumbai Indians “Icon”, instead blaming the BCCI for the situation as it had empaneled him when he already held the position in the IPL franchise.

The Board has classified Tendulkar’s alleged conflict of interest in the “tractable” category, which can be resolved through recusal or full disclosure by the individual concerned. BCCI ethics officer cum ombudsman DK Jain has served notices to all three members of the CAC – Tendulkar, VVS Laxman and Sourav Ganguly – as they are involved with three different IPL franchises, and all of them have denied the charge.

Tendulkar has said that his situation doesn’t fall in the tractable and said it was the BCCI which was “responsible for the current situation”.

In his 13-point response to Jain, Tendulkar has requested him to call Committee of Administrators (CoA) chief Vinod Rai and CEO Rahul Johri to “clarify their position” as he claimed it was the BCCI itself that had put him in the CAC, after he became a Mumbai Indians icon, and is now sitting in judgement over him.

According to the BCCI’s constitution, “Tractable conflicts are those that are resolvable or permissible or excusable through recusal of the individual concerned and – or – with full disclosure of the interest involved”.

The most prolific run-scorer in the history of international cricket has called out the board for its role in the imbroglio. “Without prejudice to the aforesaid, the Noticee submits that it is surprising that the BCCI, being the very authority responsible for the Noticee’s empanelment to the Cricket Advisory Committee (“CAC”), is presently taking a position that the Noticee is exposed to an alleged conflict of interest. It is reiterated that, the Noticee was declared as the Mumbai Indians ‘ICON’ post his retirement in 2013, which was much prior to his appointment to the CAC in 2015,” Tendulkar has argued in his response.

Tendulkar claimed that neither the CEO nor the CoA had clarified the terms of reference and his role in CAC.

“The Noticee (Tendulkar) has time and again sought clarification from the BCCI on the scope of his role in the CAC – but has not received a response from BCCI till date. BCCI is aware that the CAC merely performs an advisory/recommendatory role – and therefore, the Noticee’s role as a Mumbai Indians Icon (which in fact has always been in the public domain) cannot, in any practical way, conflict with his involvement in the CAC.”

“The Noticee fails to understand how the BCCI (after having appointed him to the CAC) can now maintain its current stand that he is in a position of ‘tractable’ conflict of interest. The BCCI Response does not clarify this variance in its stance and the Noticee requests the Hon’ble Ethics Officer to call upon BCCI Officials, Mr. Rahul Johri and Mr. Vinod Rai to clarify this position.”

Tendulkar’s son Arjun is making strides through age-group cricket and the legend pointed out that he had recused himself from the recruitment process of the national under-19 selection committee, as a CAC member, as his son was considered a prospect at that level, to avoid any conflict-of-interest controversy.

“It is critical to note that the Noticee had specifically written to the BCCI in respect of the potential conflict of interest that could have arisen in the aforesaid scenario,” Tendulkar wrote recalling that scenario.

He also indicated that given his achievements and contribution to Indian cricket over a career spanning almost two-and-a-half decades, such questions should not be asked of him.

“The Noticee has served the Indian cricket team for more than 2 decades and accepted empanelment with the CAC to help and contribute towards the growth of Indian cricket. It is unfortunate that the Noticee has to clarify the questions raised in the Complaint and BCCI Response.

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