The leadership crisis within the BCCI seems headed towards its endgame with two senior officials - secretary Sanjay Jagdale and treasurer Ajay Shirke - resigning from their posts following widespread criticism of the board's handling of the corruption issues in the IPL. Jagdale and Shirke are second and third in the board's hierarchy and their resignations, while opening up an administrative vacuum, is seen as a message to the president, N Srinivasan, who has insisted on staying in his post in the face of expert and public opinion.
Jagdale also said he would not serve on the three-man commission appointed to conduct the inquiry into Gurunath Meiyappan, India Cements, and the owners of Rajasthan Royals. "I had already requested the president not to keep me there. I had never wanted to be there," he said."
Justice T Jayaram Chouta, one of the two High Court judges on the panel, said the commission would now not be able to function because one of its members had resigned.
"I have resigned from the post of the secretary of the BCCI," Jagdale, who took office in September 2011 when N Srinivasan became BCCI president, told Times Now. "I am deeply hurt with the recent developments in Indian cricket. Let some new faces come and take the responsibility." Jagdale had played 53 first-class matches for Madhya Pradesh, and was a national selector too.
"No, there was no pressure, nobody influenced me. I felt deeply hurt, nothing else, there is no [other] reason behind it," Jagdale told CNN-IBN, when asked if Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association president Jyotiraditya Scindia - who was the first of the BCCI's senior politicians to speak out - had influenced his decision. "I was hurt as a former cricketer, as an administrator, as a cricket lover, I hurt like any of the millions of cricket lovers in India."
Jagdale did not offer opinion on whether Srinivasan should step down as president. "This was my decision, I leave it for Mr Srinivasan, he has been in the game for a longer period than me," he said. "He is capable of taking his own decisions."
Shirke had said on Thursday night that he was not happy with the way the BCCI had handled the issues of spot-fixing allegations against three Royals players and betting charges against Gurunath, a top Chennai Super Kings official and Srinivasan's son-in-law. "Yes that's true [I have resigned]," Shirke, who also began his term when Srinivasan became president, said. "I have spelt out my reason and don't want to comment any more. I have already spoken to the media at length, therefore I have resigned."
There is a possibility that there will be more resignations on Saturday morning from the five BCCI vice-presidents, including that of Arun Jaitley from the north zone and Sudhir Dabir from central zone. Insiders say that Chitrak Mitra from the east has let it be known that he will not quit while the other two vice-presidents, Shivlal Yadav from south zone and Niranjan Shah from the west, remain undecided.
ESPNcricinfo understands that senior BCCI officials had been in constant discussion with Srinivasan, asking him to step aside from his office as board president until the three-man commission completed its inquiry into his son-in-law Gurunath, the Super Kings owners India Cements, and the owners of Rajasthan Royals. Srinivasan, however, had paid no heed to their advice.
Late on Friday, Srinivasan agreed to call for a working committee meeting next week to discuss the corruption issues plaguing the IPL. The date of the meeting is yet to be confirmed, but ESPNcricinfo understands it will be held over the next weekend.