BCCI should not oppose the Sports Bill: Kapil

New Delhi: Former India captain Kapil Dev on Thursday favoured the Sports Ministry`s move to make BCCI function as a National Sports Federation (NSF), as proposed in the National Sports Development Bill.

The BCCI had rejected the bill at its Working Committee meeting in Kolkata on October 29, saying certain aspects of the bill are meant to "destroy the autonomy" of the board but Kapil said the cricket board should abide by the law.

"I think nobody is above the government or law, it may be the cricket board or any other association. Perhaps it personally hurts BCCI and so they are saying no to this bill. I don`t mind losing anything if my country is benefitted and that should be the mentality," said Kapil at a FICCI function here.

"If it benefits the entire sporting fraternity, it should come into effect. One should understand that this bill is for the betterment of everyone. Personal interests cannot be bigger than the nation. The attitude should be country comes first," said Kapil, who led the team to 1983 World Cup win.

The controversial Bill is expected to be introduced in the upcoming winter session of the Parliament.

On the issue of bringing BCCI under the purview of the RTI Act, Kapil said, "Well...I am not that qualified enough to answer this question. I think, when the situation arises, the experts dealing with the issue can give you the answer."

BCCI, which is an autonomous body, and some other sports organisations such as Indian Olympic Association (IOA) have opposed the legislation.

Last week, the BCCI shot off a 29-page letter to the sports minister Ajay Maken, giving in detail their reasons for objecting the controversial bill which seeks to regulate the functioning of sports bodies.

The letter points out that the BCCI was not required to be brought under RTI as it was transparent and its accounts were put up on its website. It also followed the tenure and age restrictions as envisaged in the bill with all the office bearers having limited tenures.

The bill was revised after the cabinet did not give its approval. The proposed bill wants to give BCCI the status of a National Sports Federation and therefore bring it under the purview of the RTI Act.

Maken said transparency in the working of National Sports Federations, including the BCCI, can be achieved by bringing them under the Right to Information Act, which the revised National Sports Development Bill seeks to incorporate.


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