Three members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have taken prominent positions in the ongoing mud slinging at the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA).
Kirti Azad, an MP from Darbhanga, has put the onus on senior party leader Arun Jaitley to set the house in order, even as a former MP Chetan Chauhan is left defending the functioning of the state cricket unit.
An agitated Azad blamed politics within the DDCA for the pitch fiasco that threatens to get the Ferozeshah Kotla blacklisted by the International Cricket Council (ICC). “The proxy system decides which faction has more power and that faction decides the officials. Pitch curator Vijay Bahadur too was given charge for this reason when he had no prior experience,” an animated Azad said at the DDCA complex here on Tuesday after attending an Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the association.
“Professionals should be employed for such specialised jobs. I also wonder why the DDCA president (Jaitley) has been unable to put a cricket committee in place as promised after Virender Sehwag’s outburst against the prevalent system a few months ago. I have great respect for Jaitley and am sure he will resign on high moral grounds if he is unable to improve things,” added Azad, who alleged he was insulted during the AGM even as another senior member was manhandled.
The DDCA vice-president Chetan Chauhan, however, dismissed Azad’s allegations.
“There were at least 125 members at the meeting and they were all witness to the goings-on. Azad was given a chance to air his views. He spoke for about 45 minutes and was also given answers he sought,” said Chauhan.
Even Jaitley refuted the claims made by Azad. Jaitley said, “No event like the one described by Azad took place in the DDCA meeting.”
Meanwhile, the Kotla pitch was by no means an unplayable surface and the fifth and final cricket One-dayer between India and Sri Lanka should have proceeded, according to former BCCI Pitches and Grounds Committee chairman Daljit Singh.
The Kotla pitch fiasco, which saw the ODI being called off after 23.3 overs due to a dangerous playing surface, had a direct bearing on the Daljit-led five-member committee which was sacked by the BCCI immediately after the incident.
—With agency inputs