Corruption in the IPL June 2, 2013

Srinivasan could breach ICC code


If, as reported, the BCCI is to allow N Srinivasan to be the Indian representative at ICC meetings, starting with the annual conference in London in the last week of June, it raises questions about his suitability according to the ICC's Code of Ethics for its directors, as well as highlighting certain grey areas.

Under clause 7 of the code, which deals with 'Betting, Gaming and Gambling', sub-section 7.2, sub-para (d) reads: "It is not permitted and a Director shall be in breach of this Code if a member of his immediate family (being a spouse, parent, sibling, son or daughter) has a controlling interest in a betting business, a substantial relationship with a betting business or is employed in the day to day operational control of a betting business."

Is Srinivasan, who is one of the ICC directors, in the breach of the above code after the arrest of his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan in relation to betting allegations?

According to Srinivasan, he was unaware of the code. "If you're looking at ICC's rules, I mean I first have to see it myself, you're reading something, number one," Srinivasan said at the press conference after the IPL final in Kolkata. "I don't have it with me, number two. I have not done anything wrong but we will see. If you've brought it to my attention, we will examine it."

The ICC declined to comment on the issue but a closer examination only exposes uncertainty. Firstly, there is no mention of the word "son-in-law" under various relations listed with reference to immediate family. Then the fact that Meiyappan was not associated with any betting company. This may mean there has been was no direct violation of the code by Srinivasan.

But does being the husband of Srinivasan's daughter not make Meiyappan also immediate family? Meiyappan may not be part of a betting company but if allegations that he was actually betting on cricket during the IPL are proven, is that not illegal under the code?

Assistance on interpretation may be found elsewhere in the document. Clause 4 of the code, on 'Conflicts of Interest', lists the circumstances when a conflict can occur and makes it clear that "this list is not exhaustive, merely illustrative". For the issue to be brought to the table, according to the ICC rules, one of the directors on the ICC board needs to raise it.

Another question that needs clarification pertains to the decision by the BCCI to absolve Srinivasan of the daily duties of the board until the internal probe into Meiyappan is concluded. But if he is not supposed to do day-to-day jobs, why should Srinivasan attend ICC meetings? Isn't that part of the BCCI's daily duties?

That question has no clear answer as Jagmohan Dalmiya, who was appointed as the interim head of the BCCI at Sunday's emergency BCCI meeting in Chennai, said the decision of who would represent India at ICC meetings was still to be made, contradicting the Mumbai Cricket Association's interim president, Ravi Sawant, who told ESPNcricinfo that Srinivasan was the frontrunner.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Senthil on June 4, 2013, 11:38 GMT

    Comeon cricinfo, why are you saying breach of ICC code when you can literally read what it states. Guru is not in betting business - as simple as that !!!

  • Dummy4 on June 4, 2013, 11:29 GMT

    The fact is that, ICC fore-sighted these sort of scenario and made relevant codes and rules too..Now to call Cricket-"Gentleman's Game" and to have these sort of clauses and codes in place is Hilarious... Cricket is a now a game within a game of deceit.. loved still by millions of true fans..

  • Rimx on June 4, 2013, 9:15 GMT

    Son in law is not there because he is not "deemed" to be in close association with the director but in the south asian culture he is deemed to be in actual having a close association with the family. Well, code of ethics is a code showing the general public that we adhere to these principles serving in the integrity and credibility of the organization they are not law as like some people are dissecting it. If we look at the ethical principles and the close association in this scenario between the 2 persons its clearly unethical and no stakeholder of cricket shall deem it to be ethical. It is with the ICC to play with its reputation or sacrifice the integrity of itself and of cricket. Lets see if ICC is also on the payroll of BCCI.

  • Ratish on June 4, 2013, 9:12 GMT

    The clause is under "ICC's Code of Ethics for its directors", so here the most important point of the code is "Ethics" for which the clause are made. So if some one trying to fight with points like in-laws are not included in the clause or not directly associated with betting industry directly etc are all are reasons to stick around as i mentioned earlier, the code is made to remind you about some ethics one has to have and act.

  • Dummy4 on June 4, 2013, 6:20 GMT

    How can these people be running the most important and influential cricket board in the world, there must be better candidates around

  • John on June 4, 2013, 6:16 GMT

    I don't see any grey area at all. As the law is worded, Srinivasan is clearly not in breach of it. If the list of relations was "including but not limited to" then that might be a grey area. If the law said "was substantially involved in betting" then that might be a grey area. As it stands, the only grey area could be if the relation involved was one of those specified and he was employed by a betting company but it was difficult to determine what his actual involvement in day-to-day control was. Maybe the regulation should be broader but, right now, it's not so there's no breach.

  • Dummy4 on June 4, 2013, 6:14 GMT

    the fact that the emergency meeting went without fuss means that srinivasan had the votes.. the fight now moves into the mumbai crime branch where investigations are happening and may be the moot three man committee.

  • Dummy4 on June 4, 2013, 6:12 GMT

    On morale grounds it doesn't matter if he himself has indulge in false things or not. What is more important that after all this halla gullaa how can a man, who is believed to be a reputed personality still be so shameless not to resign from the head position of board which is surrounded by huge controversy? Will it not hurt his self esteem badly??? Hard to understand for a common man like me!!!

  • Kannan on June 4, 2013, 6:09 GMT

    "It is not permitted and a Director shall be in breach of this Code if a member of his immediate family (being a spouse, parent, sibling, son or daughter)"

    In laws are not immediate family, especially so if they are not dependent on the person!

  • Matrix on June 4, 2013, 6:06 GMT

    When did son-in-law became part of family unit in the strict definition of it?

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