New Delhi: With decks cleared for the election of next president of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), the prominence of Jagmohan Dalmiya has risen like never before. But, the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) president is treading a safe path, opting to stay quite instead of going overboard and losing his cards.
Dalmiya can become the king-maker in this election when the BCCI holds its Annual General Meeting on December 17. Widely published reports have already made him an ally to the incumbent but suspended board president Narayanswami Srinivasan, who is seeking a second term as the boss of world's most influential and richest cricket board.
However, Dalmiya on Thursday said that these reports are not entirely true. And he is taking his own sweet time to decide on the matter – to support Srinivasan or not? “The last date for signing the nomination papers is December 15, 48 hours before the AGM. Anyone who does sign now will be committing a mistake… There’s enough time to do it leisurely,” a leading English daily quoted him.
With Srinivasan's nomination coming from East Zone, it's imperative for him to have the full support of CAB and Dalmiya. Besides the votes from its affiliate bodies – Assam, Jharkhand, Odisha and Tripura, East Zone has two more from Bengal and the National Cricket Club. And Srinivasan will need at least five out of these six votes to get his nomination uncontested, since a proposer and a seconder is needed to challenge a nomination.
If Dalmiya supports Srinivasan in his re-election to the presidency post, the former is expected to be elevated to the plump post of patron-in-chief of the board. But an astute Dalmiya denied any such proposition when he said that, “It’s a hypothetical situation and I won’t like to get into it... If the need of the hour arises for me to be the patron-in-chief, then we will see…”
In fact, he is not too sure about CAB's stand on nominating Srinivasan. “I don’t know… You know as much as I know,” he added. It is reported that the CAB will take their final decision on the matter only after November 24, Supreme Court's next hearing date on the Indian Premier League (IPL) spot-fixing and betting scandal, which also dragged Srinivasan to court.
The 85th AGM of the board was supposed to be held by September 30. But due to the ongoing investigation into the IPL case, it was postponed, and now will be held on December 17 in Chennai.
Cricket associations of Mumbai, Vidarbha and Punjab are believed to have their nomination to oppose Srinivasan's re-election.
With agency inputs