The BCCI's Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC), led by Kapil Dev with Anshuman Gaekwad and Shanta Rangaswamy as its other members, has been cleared of conflict of interest and given the go-ahead to pick the next head coach of the senior Indian men's team. The decision is expected to be made by mid-August.
The three-member Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) received the required no-conflict notice from the panelists and subsequently voted on the issue, giving the CAC a 2-1 mandate.
CoA member Diana Edulji was the one who voted against clearing the CAC. She was one of two persons who had flagged the potential conflict-of-interest issue in this case, the other being external complainant Sanjeev Gupta, a life member of the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association.
After the CoA meeting, Edulji maintained that the matter still needed to go to the BCCI's ethics officer, Justice (retd) DK Jain. She contended that the CoA had no authority to appoint an ad-hoc committee and clear it of conflict. "It was a 2-1 call [against me]," she was quoted as saying by PTI. "I said it has to go to the ethics officer to decide on conflict of interest. Ad-hoc committee is not in the constitution. As such I have voiced my dissent.
"It is not CoA's domain to decide who is conflicted or not. It has to be done by the ethics officer. An ad-hoc committee cannot pick the coach. It is not in the constitution."
CoA head Vinod Rai, however, told ESPNcricinfo that the matter had to be forwarded to the ethics officer by the CoA only if there was a "reason to" do so. "No, there's no question of sending it to the ethics officer unless there is a reason to," he said. "In this case, there was no such reason. There was disagreement [on Edulji's part], but the majority voted."
The question of conflict came up because Kapil is also part of the steering committee on the newly formed Indian Cricketers' Association (ICA) where he is also one of directors. Incidentally, the ICA is funded by the BCCI. Kapil also works as an expert for Indian television channels. As for Gaekwad, it is alleged that in addition to working as a pundit on television channels, he is also part of the BCCI's Member Affiliation Committee, a sub-committee which grants membership to state associations. Gaekwad, too, is part of the ICA's steering group, as is Rangaswamy, who is also an ICA director.
Gupta, meanwhile, had argued that only an elected BCCI administrative team, and not the CAC, was qualified to do the work.
Incidentally, Gupta had filed a similar charge against two members of the previous CAC - Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman - which Justice Jain had upheld.
The current support staff of Ravi Shastri (head coach), Bharat Arun (bowling coach), Sanjay Bangar (batting coach) and R Sridhar (fielding coach) are all travelling with the team in the Caribbean, having been given an extension till the new support staff are in place. Meanwhile, Patrick Farhart, the physio, and Shankar Basu, the fitness trainer, have opted out of extending their contracts and have moved on.