Baroda Cricket Association president Chirayu Amin was on Monday unanimously appointed as the interim commissioner of the Indian Premier League after Lalit Modi was suspended late last night by the Board of Control for Cricket in India.
The IPL governing council met here and deliberated for close to two hours before arriving on Amin’s name. The board, while not appointing an interim IPL committee to help Amin run the show, has in a move that is expected to be widely appreciated announced that former India captains and current members of the IPL governing council, Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi, Sunil Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri will discuss the strategy for IPL 2011.
Addressing the media after the meeting, BCCI president Shashank Manohar said it was necessary to suspend Modi “so that there is no interference”.
“I don’t think that the autonomy of the Board is threatened. It’s the duty of the board to look into allegations. It is necessary to suspend a person so that there is no interference. Suspension is not a punishment, it’s just for free and fair inquiry.”
He added that the IPL “is a great property and has love from all of you and across the globe” and while the “commercial aspect is important also ethics are important”.
Manohar said the show cause notice and the suspension letter was sent to Lalit Modi after the IPL final last night as they did not want to disrupt the tournament.
He confirmed that the 22 charges against Modi were discussed in the meeting and said, “Everyday the IT dept is asking for the documents which we don’t have in our custody.”
Manohar also took on the media and said,”An allegation is being made, the media is saying that all members are party to the decisions made by governing council. The governing council had no other option. Media should have the correct facts before they present their views.
“All of us were here as honorary members, we don’t hide anything from the board. As far as IPL is concerned we knew it’s a huge property.”
He also indicated that all people involved with the IPL could not be held responsible for the mess in the IPL and said, “We have appointed officials and professionals for various jobs, everyone can’t be held responsible.”
Fielding question on the counter-charges made by Lalit Modi, the BCCI chief said it was a “misconception” created by the media.
“If Rajasthan Royals funds are coming from outside India, I have no machinery to check that. The Income-Tax and the Enforcement Directorate are investigating into this, we got the information from them.”
Stating that the ownership of the Rajasthan franchise was still not clear as there were “too many unidentified companies” and that the “names of Shilpa Shetty and Raj Kundra was not present in the ownership documents of Rajasthan Royals”.
Manohar said Board official Ratnakar Shetty will look into the missing bid documents.
The Board president reiterated that “all decisions are to be taken by the IPL governing council in majority and if others are guilty we’ll take same action against them.”
Manohar said that he had never persuaded Modi to attend the meeting and that he was “not aware whether Modi was to attend the meeting or not”.
He added that the Board has no documents to probe allegations of facilitation fee made about telecast rights for the IPL.