Jaitley 'uneasy' over IPL insiders betting
Arun Jaitley, a BCCI vice-president, has revealed that he is "not fully satisfied" with how the crucial working committee meeting on Sunday panned out. At the meeting it was decided that BCCI president N Srinivasan would step aside from his post till the completion of the inquiry into his son-in-law, arrested on May 26 on charges of betting in the IPL, and Jaitley also remarked that he would have been happier with a "cordial arrangement" when the crisis first broke.
"The fact that there is ... huge betting in cricket, is itself a matter of concern," he told NDTV. "But when insiders get involved in betting, betting gets transformed into fixing and I think that is a very serious challenge to the fairness of the game in India ... and that leaves me hugely uneasy. And therefore I would like to see whoever is responsible, the accountability process is now set into motion, and taken to its logical conclusion." Jaitley, a senior member of the Bharatiya Janata Party, is widely tipped to take over as BCCI president next year.
He also said he would have been more satisfied if the BCCI had resolved the question of Srinivasan's position quickly, instead of letting it drag for more than week. "When ... a relative of a senior board official is allegedly involved in betting, it casts very serious doubts. And therefore it calls for a very strong action. I would have been happier if the kind of arrangement we have arrived at would cordially have been arrived at on day one. Rather than on day 8 or day 9."
Jaitley also elaborated on the suggestions he made at the working committee meeting on Sunday. "At the very outset in the meeting I made a few suggestions: a) the president must step aside, b) a credible alternative must be there, c) the inquiry must be absolutely fair and d) we must respond to various elements of public accountability of the board. "
There had been plenty of speculation that Srinivasan would be forced to resign at the meeting, but he managed to avoid that situation, and former ICC president Jagmohan Dalmiya was temporarily put in charge of the BCCI.
Jaitley also said that his candidate for interim president had been Shashank Manohar. "I suggested Shashank Manohar's name; we did not want to squabble over names," he said. "There is no reason to doubt that Dalmiya will not do a reasonable job, he is a senior administrator committed to the game."
Dalmiya, who is currently president of the Cricket Association of Bengal, began supervising the day-to-day activities of the BCCI from Monday. He has headed the ICC previously, and is widely credited with being among those who laid the foundation for Indian cricket to become the financial powerhouse it is.