Sports Cricket 13 Dec 2018 Diana Edulji targets ...

Diana Edulji targets COA chief Vinod Rai

Published Dec 13, 2018, 8:21 pm IST
Updated Dec 13, 2018, 8:21 pm IST
Edulji has also said that emails regarding her views on the coach for Women's team had been leaked because of "someone's ulterior motive".
Edulji has also revealed that Anil Kumble was removed as Indian Cricket Coach last year at the behest of Virat Kohli and the former spinner was made to look like a
 Edulji has also revealed that Anil Kumble was removed as Indian Cricket Coach last year at the behest of Virat Kohli and the former spinner was made to look like a "villain". (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: In the Committee of Administrators (COA), views of only one person are considered and those of others don't matter, a member of the Supreme Court-appointed body Diana Edulji has said, apparently targeting its Chairman Vinod Rai.

Edulji, a decorated former Indian cricket captain, has also said that the emails regarding her views on the coach for Women's team had been leaked because of "someone's ulterior motive".


She has also revealed that Anil Kumble was removed as Indian Cricket Coach last year at the behest of Virat Kohli and the former spinner was made to look like a "villain".

The Supreme Court had in January last year appointed four-member COA to run the affairs of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). Headed by Rai, its other members were Edulji, historian Ramchandra Guha and business executive Vikram Limaye.

Guha and Limaye resigned from the committee last year, leaving Edulji as the only member besides the Chairman.

An email chain between Edulji, Rai, General Manager cricket operations Saba Karim, BCCI CEO Rahul Johri and BCCI legal advisor Indranil Deshmukh over the issue of ad hoc committee for the selection of a coach for the Women's team, reflects a conflict between her and the COA chairman.

"As Chairman, he (Rai) cannot take any unilateral decisions as there is no casting vote for Chairman," she wrote in an email addressed to Rai and officials of the BCCI on December 11 while talking about the ad hoc committee whose formation she is opposed to.

Going further, she wrote, "Rahul (Johri) and Saba (Karim) without my approval you cannot proceed on this as it does not have my approval."

In an apparent attack on Rai, she wrote, "It is strange that in a democratic setup of COA only views of one person are considered and the views expressed by other member (who was also appointed by the Hon'ble SC along with you) don't matter.

Edulji, a decorated former cricketer, added in her email to Rai, "When I mentioned let's refer the ad hoc committee issue to amicus, you suddenly care about the deadlines and timelines. And going to amicus doesn't even cost BCCI like in case of other opinions. When it suits you then go for opinion and when I say it, there is no need of it. "

She went on to add: "The CAC (Cricket Advisory Committee) has to select the Head Coach but before their availability was checked, Saba had already spoken to Kapil Anshuman and Shubhangi. I enquired for clarity on their conflict roles as how an Ad hoc committee was being formed without proper authority.

"But legal as usual gave a contrary opinion - 2 different versions on 2 issues. On one hand, COA has no powers to look into the COI issue and on another hand, COA has powers to appoint an Ad hoc committee."

While talking about the ex-coach Ramesh Powar, Edulji said: "Regarding the Coach, right from the beginning, I have expressed that there should be no change but with someone's ulterior motive emails were leaked and the team was shown as a divided lot which they are not.

"Even in the leaks issue you just brushed it off saying this is what BCCI is famous for and it is going on till today. Does this mean it is not the COA's job to ensure that such leaks should not happen and measures are taken to stop it.

"In my absence, you had a meeting with the 2 Women Cricket Captains and when I enquired on the same; you replied saying they wanted to meet you so you met them. Once again, you have failed to understand that I have an equal say in all matters of BCCI as COA with equal rights not less not more.

" You went ahead to issue an advert for a new coach without closing the previous process which was not completed and 6 shortlisted candidates are waiting for a result. This, I have highlighted in previous emails and legal did no express any views on it."

In her email to Rai, she also wrote, "The Capt and Vice Capt have requested their choice so why can't we respect their choice for this tour till we get clarity on the committee. We can go ahead and continue with the same coach. The views of the 2 senior players must not be ignored."

She also supported the Women's T20 Captain Harmanpreet Kaur and Vice Captain Smriti Mandhana expressing their views against ODI Captain Mithali Raj, following which she was dropped from the T20 World Cup Semi Final.

In this context, she also revealed that Virat Kohli was behind the ouster of Kumble as the Cricket Men's Team Coach.

"I see nothing wrong in Women Cricketers writing emails reg(arding) the Coach. They were truthful in expressing their views, unlike Virat who frequently sent SMS's to the CEO on which you acted and there was a change in the Coach.

"There also I had objected and my dissent is recorded when the timelines were extended for someone to apply as he didn't apply in time.

"Kumble a legend in his own right was subjected to loss of face and made to look like a villain, he was gracious enough to move on for which I respect him. There also rules were broken and I had raised objections back then," Edulji wrote.

Rai wrote in his reply: "I have read Diana's mail. I have considered all aspects of the issue. In the best interest of women's cricket as Chairman of the COA, I reiterate my views. Rahul and Saba May please take action as instructed by me yesterday."

On the issue of Indian Men's team coach, he said, "There were differences between Virat and Kumble. As a consequence of that Kumble stepped back. More importantly, the team did not send emails. "

Regarding the Mithali Raj issue, Rai wrote, "The team must realise that coaches are not decided on team votes. If it is a question of respecting opinions of senior players--- why not respect the opinion of the senior most player-- in fact the ODI captain of the team? The advert for the head coach has issued. If media is to be believed, internationally reputed coaches have applied/are applying."

Despite Edulji's opposition, the BCCI on the same evening of December 11 formed an ad-hoc committee to conduct interviews of eligible candidates for the post of head coach of the national women's senior cricket team. The interview of the shortlisted candidates will be conducted on December 20 at the BCCI headquarters in Mumbai.