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BCCI treasurer red-flags plan to distribute ICC Rs 3 cr ‘salary’ among staff

The Indian Express logoThe Indian Express 04-03-2017
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The Treasurer, Board of Control for Cricket in India, has raised a slew of objections over the BCCI’s move to distribute the one-time ICC incentive, also known as World Cup salary, earmarked for those involved in the conduct of the 2016 T20 World Cup.

On February 28, 2017, an email was sent by BCCI Chief Executive Officer Rahul Johri asking for clearance to pay out $500,000 (Rs 3.3 crore) to 32 employees named in a list. The mail was marked to Chief Financial Officer Santosh Rangnekar, SC appointed-Committee of Administrators (CoA) member Vikram Limaye and BCCI lawyer Adarsh Saxena.

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The mail said that the list of payees was approved by the CoA on February 25, 2017 and certified by tournament directors R P Shah and M V Sridhar.

According to the list, Shah and Sridhar, who are also BCCI administrators, were to get $55,000 each.

This was red-flagged by BCCI Treasurer Anirudh Chaudhary in his email. “I see that we have gentlemen getting $55,000 from the execution of this list certifying it. I am a little unclear as to what is it exactly that they are certifying? Are they certifying that this amount ought to be paid to these people?”

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When contacted, manager Sridhar, who certified the list that names him as one of the beneficiaries, declined to comment. 

The list of beneficiaries includes Neeraj Kumar, former Delhi police commissioner who was BCCI’s Anti Corruption Unit consultant. He has been allotted $30,000 while Game Development Manager Ratnakar Shetty was supposed to get $20,000. An office peon was allotted $5,000 and several executives $3,000 each.

Chaudhary asked whether payment for other tournaments was also clubbed with this World Cup salary. And wanted to know whether the amounts mentioned in the sheet included amounts for the BCCI games held in Florida, USA.

“I have reasons to believe that they do. If that be the case, inclusion of those figures here under the budgeted head of salary for the World T20 event may amount to falsification of accounts. Since I am constrained by way of the directions of the CoA to only make the payment and to not withhold any payments, who would be held responsible for this in case it is proven to be the case and it finally comes to light that this in fact was falsification?,” he said in his email. 

Chaudhary raised a key question: “I would lastly like to ask as to whether the people involved in the decision-making and certification are truly convinced and satisfied that these people were the only people who worked on the ICC WT20 event?”.

Chaudhary doesn’t hold any position in the board after CoA informed all state associations last week clarifying that office-bearers will get nine years either in the BCCI or state bodies, and its not a cumulative 18-year term leaving treasurer Chaudhary and Joint Secretary Amitabh Choudhary without any post. However, as per the BCCI Constitution, all payments need to be signed by the Treasurer.

When contacted, Chaudhary declined to comment.

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