The Board of Control for Cricket president Anurag Thakur and its secretary Ajay Shirke have been sacked by the Supreme Court today. For failing to implement the reforms suggested by the Lodha panel, the BCCI will now have an observer, who will be appointed on January 19.
Defiant heads of state associations who did not agree to implement the Lodha reforms will also be removed.
The court said all Lodha recommendations must be implemented and this means that all cricket administrators over 70 years old will have to resign.
The Supreme Court also issued a show cause notice to Thakur and Shirke, asking why they should not be tried for perjury and contempt of court.
Thakur faced charges of perjury and he could still go to jail if he doesn't apologise to the Supreme Court.
Thakur in an affidavit had told the Supreme Court that he did not request the International Cricket Council (ICC) chairman Shashank Manohar to write to the court saying that the appointment of a member of the CAG amounts to 'government interference'. However, clarifying to the court, Amicus Curiae Gopal Subramaniam said Thakur did ask Manohar to write to the Supreme Court. Manohar had been asked to file his response in the Supreme Court to 'set the record straight'.
A committee of administrators will look after the BCCI’s affairs. The senior-most BCCI vice-president will act as president while the joint-secretary will act as secretary All the BCCI office-bearers and state associations will have to give an undertaking to abide by the Lodha Committee recommendations, it further ruled.
The court will now hear the case on January 19 to zero in on the names of administrators. By the next date, Thakur and Shirke will have to respond why contempt and perjury proceedings should not be initiated against them for allegedly lying under oath on trying to scuttle the reforms being undertaken by court-appointed Lodha Committee.
"This is the logical consequence. Once the recommendations were accepted by the court, it had be implemented. There were obstructions, there were impediments ... obviously this had to happen, and it has happened,” former Chief Justice of India RM Lodha, the chairman of the Lodha Committee, said after the court order
"The Supreme Court itself has ensured that its order of 18 July is now enforced. It’s victory for the game of cricket and it will flourish, administrators come and go, ultimately it is for the game,” Lodha further said.
The verdict, in what has come to be known as BCCI versus the Lodha Committee face-off, came after months of a bitter court battle. The Lodha Committee, appointed by the Supreme Court after a betting scandal in the Indian Premier League, has recommended sweeping changes in the way the board is run and led and had complained that the BCCI or Board of Control for Cricket in India was refusing to implement them.