India's sports ministry has reiterated that the BCCI be brought under the transparency-enhancing Right to Information (RTI) Act, a move that was last proposed in 2011 but ran into political resistance.
"The BCCI, like all other national sports federations, will have to come under the RTI and anti-doping regulations," sports secretary PK Deb told the Indian Express. "We will stick by the recommendations made to us by the Justice Mukul Mudgal-led panel."
Mudgal, who heads the committee charged with finalising the National Sports Development Bill, said the BCCI will have to meet the requirements of the RTI Act, failing which it will not be allowed to use "India" in the titles of its teams. "It is important that the BCCI, like all [sports] federations, is brought under the RTI," Mudgal said. "Apart from a few exemptions - like, one cannot raise questions regarding why a particular player/coach is selected over another, or the contents of a player's contract, medical health and fitness etc - the public is authorised to raise questions. Unless the BCCI adopts this rule, it won't be able to use 'India' for its teams."
The sports secretary also criticised the BCCI's clearing of the owners of Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings before the completion of the police investigation into alleged corruption in the IPL. "The board should have waited for the police probe to get over before clearing them," Deb said.
The secretary's comments came just before the Bombay High Court ruled that the BCCI's two-member committee that investigated and subsequently cleared the franchise owners was constituted illegally.