It is not for me to advise BCCI - Gavaskar
Sunil Gavaskar, the former India captain, has defended himself against accusations of remaining 'silent' during the ongoing crisis in Indian cricket following the spot-fixing and betting controversies. Gavaskar said he has made his views known and that it was not up to him to advise N Srinivasan, the current president of the BCCI, on what's to be done to deal with the crisis.
"Ever since the three Rajasthan Royals players were taken into custody, I have been on the TV channel that I am contracted to, and have given my views on the episode as it has unfolded," Gavaskar, who is a cricket expert on the channel NDTV, wrote in his Sunday column published in various newspapers. "So to say that I have been silent is totally erroneous and downright mischievous."
Two top BCCI officials, Ajay Shirke and Sanjay Jagdale, resigned from their posts as treasurer and board secretary respectively, followed by Rajiv Shukla, who stepped down as IPL chairman. There have been calls for Srinivasan to resign, until the BCCI's inquiry into his son-in-law and Chennai Super Kings official Gurunath Meiyappan, India Cements, and Rajasthan Royals' owners is complete. But Gavaskar isn't among those asking Srinivasan to step aside.
"What maybe immoral to one may not be immoral to another, and as long as it is within the framework of the laws that govern our country, nobody should be forced to say or do anything against their will is what I believe in," he said. "So whether Mr. Srinivasan should stay or step aside while the probe committee does its job is a moral issue, and it is for him to take a call on that. That has been my stand, and since it is not one that resonates with most TV channels and the print media, I am accused of being silent.
Gavaskar said it was "for the BCCI and Mr. Srinivasan" to take a call on what was a "moral issue" facing Indian cricket. "It is not for me to advise them what to do as everybody else seems to be doing, and if that is taken as being bought then good luck to democracy in our country."
Gavaskar is also contracted with the BCCI. "The reason why such contracts are done is to obtain exclusivity from the contracted entity so that he/ she does not appear on a rival channel and that is why good money is paid to the former players. That is also why I have not appeared on another TV channel excepting the news channel that has a contract with me."