Sourav Ganguly, Jay Shah to appeal for extension today, petitioners unlikely to object

Written by Abhishek Patil

The Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) lawyers are set to take up the case of president Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah in front of the Supreme Court on Wednesday seeking an extension, Cricket Age reliably learns.

Considering the current COVID-19 pandemic situation, the elections for the roles can’t be held while it is not possible to leave the BCCI without the top bosses either.

While Sourav Ganguly’s tenure will conclude on September 23, Shah’s has already ended. Yet, the latter continues to be a part of the BCCI office-bearers in the current proceedings. Secretary Jayesh George’s contract, meanwhile, still has a couple of more months to go, with September 23 being his final day.

It was the Cricket Administration of Bihar that had filed a petition asking for Ganguly and Shah not to be given an extension but keeping the current circumstances in mind, they are unlikely to appeal against the extension in front of the Supreme Court.

“Under the circumstances and taking into account the uncertainty caused by the pandemic, our lawyers will not oppose the changes sought by BCCI. A figure like Ganguly is good for Indian cricket and he has had little time to settle down in his job. We will request the court to let the existing set-up continue for at least as long as the situation isn’t normal. We are not looking at a time frame like one year or three years,” CAB secretary Aditya Verma was quoted as saying.

The BCCI itself had filed two petitions – first in December and then in April – seeking amendments to the AGM last year, asking for Ganguly and Shah to continue keeping their current roles in the board till 2025.

As per the current ruling, both are required to undergo a cooling-off period of three years. The BCCI’s argument is that time spent in state bodies and the national board should be counted separately.

For the previous order (issued by the SC itself) to be revised, the new order will have to come from a bigger bench. The previous one was given by a 3-judge panel while this one is a 2-judge panel. An extension keeping the pandemic in mind, however, could still be given.

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Abhishek Patil