Srinivasan exploring legal options
Chennai: Under-fire BCCI President N Srinivasan is exploring various legal options though he continued to remain mum on the Supreme Court observation that he should step down from his post for a fair probe into the IPL fixing scandal.
The beleaguered Srinivasan, who underwent a cataract surgery today, had a series of meeting with legal experts during the day though no official word as to what he plans to do has come out yet. His legal counsel P S Raman also met him at his residence but declined to speak on the issue.
"He (Srinivasan) had a cataract operation in the other eye this morning. I have come to meet him because of that. It is only a courtesy call," Raman told reporters.
When asked specifically whether Srinivasan was contemplating to step down in view of the Supreme Court observation, he refused to comment. It is learnt that 69-year-old BCCI supremo is exploring various legal options available to him.
Srinivasan`s continued silence has raised speculation that he may not resign immediately but may wait for the hearing to resume tomorrow before taking a final decision. Seeking a review is one of the options available to him.
BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel, who was in the United Arab Emirates to attend Asian Cricket Council meeting and also oversee the arrangements for the upcoming Indian Premier League, has cut short his visit and is expected to reach the city tomorrow morning.
Patel is scheduled to meet Srinivasan soon after his arrival here to decide the future course of action. The court, which on Friday asked BCCI chief as to why he was sticking to the chair, wanted Srinivasan to quit on his own. The court had said if Srinivasan will not quit, they will pass an order for his removal.
After going through the contents of a report filed in a sealed cover by apex court-appointed probe panel into the scandal, a bench headed by Justice A K Patnaik said there are "very very serious" allegations made in the report and unless the BCCI President steps down, no fair probe can be conducted.
Three of five BCCI Vice Presidents -- Shivlal Yadav, Ravi Sawant and Chitrak Mitra -- had put pressure on Srinivasan by saying that he should honour Supreme Court`s observation but the Tamil Nadu strong man stuck to his guns.
BCCI`s new election rules will come into effect in September this year when the principal office-bearers and vice-presidents elected at AGMs from 2014 shall hold the office for a period of three years. Clause 15 (v) of BCCI?s Rules and Regulations will apply if Srinivasan resigns.
The clause reads: "ln case of vacancy occurring in the office of President by reason of death or by him being adjudged insolvent or by him being convicted in a criminal case by a competent Court or by resignation or otherwise, the Hony. Secretary shall within 15 days convene a Special General Body Meeting to elect the President who shall be nominated by at least one full member from the zone which proposed the name of the President whose term was cut short prematurely. Such person who is so elected shall hold office till the next elections."
Since Srinivasan hails from South, it means that South Zone will have the right to nominate an eligible candidate. Shivlal Yadav, who is the vice-president from South Zone will have a good chance to become the president in such a scenario.
Srinivasan had stepped aside in June 2013 after his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan`s name cropped up in the fixing scandal, which had to led to ban on paceman S Sreesanth and his two other Rajasthan Royals colleagues. In his absence, former BCCI chief Jagmohan Dalmiya discharged the duties of the President.
However, at the BCCI AGM in September 2013, Srinivasan was re-elected as President. Supreme Court had appointed a three-member probe panel, led by retired judge Justice Mukul Mudgal to investigate into the fixing saga. The Apex court-appointed panel had replaced BCCI`s own two-man probe panel, which had exonerated Meiyappan of any wrongdoing and its verdict was challenged in the courts.