Call it the 'return of the czar', but this long-drawn-out war between Lalit Modi and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is anything but over.
Minutes after the former Indian Premier League (IPL) chairman was declared elected president of the Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) on Tuesday, the BCCI poured cold water on the flamboyant administrator's plans of defying a life ban by suspending the association. The board also decided to name an ad hoc committee to run the game in the state.
"...Under the authority vested in him as per regulation 32 (vii) of the rules and regulations of BCCI, Mr Shivlal Yadav, interim president, BCCI, has suspended the Rajasthan Cricket Association from the membership of the BCCI, pending disciplinary proceedings against it on charges of misconduct," BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel said in a statement.
According to Mehmood Abdi, the newly-elected deputy president of the RCA, the association will challenge the BCCI sanction in court. "Lalit has won by a huge margin (he polled 24 of the 29 declared votes).
The RCA is governed by the Rajasthan Sports Act. That's the law of the land. The BCCI is just a registered body. When there is a clash between a law and a bye-law, the law always wins," Abdi told dna.
Abdi, who represents the Sri Ganganagar District Cricket Association in the RCA, said the members are thrilled to have Modi back. "Lalit addressed us all via Skype a couple of hours after the results were declared," Abdi said.
"He assured us that cricketers won't be harmed. He has already formed a committee under my leadership to fight the BCCI's decision. He has already decided that the RCA will build eight world-class academies across the state. We will hire professionals to run the association. We will not tolerate corruption," added Abdi, who also happens to be Modi's lawyer.
Modi's election was announced by a Supreme Court-appointed observer. The polls were conducted in January under the observation of former SC judge NM Kasliwal, but the results were sealed. On April 30, the Supreme Court had ordered that the results be announced on May 6. Four of the 33 votes are still sealed because these districts were represented by opposing factions.
RCA ELECTION RESULTS
President: Lalit Modi (24 votes)
Deputy President: Mehmood Abdi (25)
Vice-Presidents: Amin Pathan, Ratan Singh, Rajendra Singh Rathore, Sushil Sharma, Vimal Sharma, Vivek Vyas
Secretary: Sumendra Tiwari (25)
Treasurer: Pawan Goyal (24)
Joint-Secretaries: Nripjit Singh Surpur, Pradeep Nagar, Shakti Singh Rathore, Vinod Saharan
Organising Secretaries: Devaram Choudhury, Rajesh Sharma, Rajkumar Mathur, Satish Vyas
Executive Members: Ashok Gehlot, Rajesh Gupta, Rajesh Saraswat
Note: The RCA comprises 33 district associations, but only 29 votes were counted on Tuesday. The rest are sealed