July 08, 2020
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Taking On Big Daddy

Two chums hope to clean up BCCI's act

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Taking On Big Daddy

It’s David vs Goliath all over again. While Outlook was researching this story, meeting cricket administrators and players, news filtered through that a parallel investigation into the affairs of the BCCI was also being conducted, and the very same people whom Outlook was contacting were being tapped.

It turned out to be Rahul Mehra and Shantanu Sharma, two 26-year-old school friends from Delhi’s Modern School. "We couldn’t bear to watch the Australians thrash our team and decided to do something about it. But what, was the question," says Sharma. The only option they could see was a PIL. "That’s because the BCCI is a society answerable only to its 31 state associations. So, the only way is to ask the court to intervene in public interest," says Mehra, a criminal lawyer by profession. After a month of work, they finally filed their PIL on Friday, February 18.

In their prayer to the court, they’ve asked for a total revamp of the BCCI by changing the election process. The plea is that only former cricketers be allowed to stand for election for state cricket association posts and only after they prove themselves at that level will they be allowed to go to the BCCI.

The question they’ve been asked repeatedly is, why are they doing this? "We’ve asked ourselves this question many a time and the only answer we have is that we love the game and want to contribute to it," says Mehra. But the pair obviously needed help. They approached various sports editors for their research. Then, they met economist and cricket enthusiast Surjit Bhalla, who was about to launch his website www.cricketx.com. Bhalla offered to host their findings on his site. "We need to run a campaign against the BCCI and the Net is the best way to do so, as it is interactive," says Bhalla. Cricket lovers can also send e-mails to www.cricketx.com, addressed to Jagmohan Dalmiya and Jaywant Lele, which Bhalla promises will be personally delivered.

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