N Srinivasan

 NEW DELHI, April 17: The Supreme Court today said former BCCI president N Srinivasan cannot represent the board in the April 24 ICC meeting as he has been held guilty of “conflict of interest” and “abuse of authority”.

The apex court allowed acting secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Amitabh Chaudhary, to represent the board in International Cricket Council (ICC) meeting and asked BCCI’s CEO Rahul Johri to accompany him.

The court was informed that Srinivasan and Niranjan Shah, who were rendered ineligible to become office-bearers in the BCCI and state cricket associations by virtue of the apex court’s verdict, could participate in tomorrow’s special general body meeting of BCCI and may be nominated to take part in the ICC meeting.

“N Srinivasan cannot go (for ICC meeting),” a bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra said.

“This person (Srinivasan) was held guilty by this court for conflict of interest and abuse of authority. He cannot go,” the bench, also comprising Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud, said, adding “a man, once having a conflict of interest, cannot go”.

“Regard being had to the significance of representation of the BCCI in the said international body, ie. ICC, it is directed that Amitabh Chaudhary shall represent the BCCI before ICC and Rahul Johri shall accompany him and also attend the meeting of the chief executive officers,” the bench said.

The top court, on January 22, 2015, had barred Srinivasan from contesting any BCCI polls unless he forsakes ownership of an IPL team.

The court had also assailed the amendment in BCCI rules permitting cricket administrators like Srinivasan to have commercial interest by owing teams in IPL and Champions League and had said it was bad on grounds of conflict of interest.

During the hearing today, senior advocate Kapil Sibal and advocates representing the parties in the matter said that Chaudhary was a qualified person and was well-versed with all the facts. So he could be nominated to attend the ICC meeting.

Senior advocate P Chidambaram, appearing for the apex court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA), said the issue was whether a person who has been disqualified by virtue of the court’s verdict, could be nominated to represent the BCCI in ICC meeting in which revenue-sharing between the members of the apex cricket body would be discussed, apart from other issues.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, who was appearing for the cricket associations of the armed forces, association of universities and Railways, told the court that a person having the know-how and experience of at least 15-20 years in the affairs of cricket body should go to attend the ICC meeting.

To this, the bench said, “we agree on this. We can send this second man (Niranjan Shah) who is 74 years old but having an experience of 40 years.”

“We have names of two persons in our mind, Shah and Chaudhary,” the bench said, after which Chidambaram said the court can appoint anyone to attend the ICC meeting but Johri should be allowed to accompany him. – PTI

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