Kolkata, March 27:
With the Supreme Court taking a strong stand on the IPL betting controversy, former Indian cricket board president Jagmohan Dalmya Thursday admitted the BCCI’s “prestige was at stake” and called for cleaning up Indian cricket.
However, treading cautiously, the seasoned cricket administrator ducked questions on whether Board of Control for Cricket in India president N. Srinivasan should quit.
He limited himself to saying that an emergent meeting was “welcome”.
Dalmiya addressed the media hours after the apex court proposed the name of former India captain Sunil Gavaskar to replace Srinivasan as the BCCI head and suggested that Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals be kept out of the seventh edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) that starts April 16.
Reading from a prepared statement, Dalmiya referred to the “series of measures” he had suggested as BCCI’s interim chief last year when Srinivasan stepped aside at the BCCI till the pendency of the spot fixing probe involving his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan – to “clean the game”.
“I am confident that if those proposals are adhered to, the brand image of the IPL can be restored. Today the Supreme Court has come up with a suggestion for betterment of Indian cricket and to ensure a clean-up of the game. It is evident that Indian cricket is at crossroads with the BCCI prestige at stake,” said Dalmiya.
“Therefore, I appeal to all concerned to come together for the cause of Indian cricket and allow the clean-up process that the honourable Supreme Court has forcefully insisted upon.”
Dalmiya said it was “not too late” to act.
“It is also indeed the time to transform the recommendation and measures into action immediately without any further delay for a cleaner cricket and for a cleaner IPL.”
Replying to a query, he said the “situation was bad”, as otherwise the Supreme Court would not have imposed itself so forcefully.
Dalmiya said he had not received any message about any emergent board meeting, but “a meeting at this point will be welcome”.
Iterating that he was an optimist, Dalmiya said: “The paradise is not lost yet. Collectively we can still save the situation”.
He parried a pointed query on whether Srinivasan should step down, saying the matter was subjudice.
“I just say that Indian cricket can return to its glory if we work collectively to clean-up the game. Why go to that extent that our action has to be explained?”
Asked if the coming seventh IPl should be suspended this year, Dalmiy said it was an ultimate scenario. “If you are unable to fix the problems you’ve to suspend it. But collectively we’ve to see if we can work out a better solution.”