Over fifty organizations have been banned by the administrator of the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) appointed by the Supreme Court. Justice L Nageswara Rao, a former judge of the Supreme Court, cited a number of instances of conflict of interest and nepotism when he barred some prominent members of the HCA from holding any position in the organization for one year and disqualified them from voting in the upcoming HCA election.
The purge order, which was issued on Monday (July 31), will prevent Arshad Ayub, a former India cricketer, Vanka Pratap, a former Hyderabad cricketer, and the powerful Agarwal family, who have all held a large portion of voting clubs and thus influenced the HCA election, from both contesting and voting in the upcoming election.
PR Man Singh, the manager of the 1983 World Cup, and K John Manoj, a former association secretary, are also affected by the order, which was apparently issued after a meticulous forensic audit of the voting list. In total, 57 clubs with a total of 215 members and approximately ten international cricketers have been barred from participating in the upcoming election, which is expected to be ordered shortly.
Tuesday, the Administrator will appoint an electoral officer to launch the election process. Former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin and former India spinner and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president N Shivlal Yadav are not mentioned in the 46-page order.
The administrator observed that the association was controlled by a cartel of families that manipulated election outcomes. Additionally, a handful of individuals with influence over multiple clubs create a cartel that decides who should be elected to the Apex Council. Consequently, the elections for the Apex Council would not be equitable and transparent. According to information received from multiple sources, this appears to be the story of all previous HCA Apex Council elections.
“To uphold the democratic principles of fairness in elections to the Apex Council of HCA and to prevent the propensity for manipulation and maneuvering by a few individuals controlling a number of clubs, I found it necessary to conduct a detailed inquiry into the ownership of multiple clubs,” the order said.
The Administrator also noted that many members controlled multiple clubs and that this practice should cease. “During the course of the investigation, I observed that a number of individuals have changed their executive committees in accordance with the recommendations of the Justice Lodha Committee. Some individuals told me that they do not control more than one club, despite the fact that their family members run other clubs, as there is no prohibition against their family members controlling other clubs. I believe that the practice of individuals controlling multiple clubs should be eliminated.
“This applies not only to the individual but also to his immediate family members like parents, spouse, siblings, spouses of siblings, children, and spouses of children. It was construed from the hearings that control could only be established by the members of one club through its affiliation with another club, wherein the said clubs have such members of their immediate family as office bearers. In this context and as explained above, immediate family shall include a person’s closest family unit, i.e., parents, spouse, siblings, spouses of siblings, children, and spouses of children. For the reasons stated in this order above, leverage can be granted to families having an affiliation with other clubs through distant relatives such as cousins, nieces, nephews, etc.,” the order said.
The order was welcomed by a particular segment. Azharuddin, the outgoing president who may be running for re-election, told CricAdvisor, “This is how it should be.” “Using proxies, a tiny group of families controlled the association. This has been the scourge of Hyderabad cricket, it was long overdue, and the appropriate order has now been issued. I am a member of the HCA by virtue of being a member of the home association as an international player, as per the Lodha Committee’s directive,” the former India captain said.
“The clean-up of the association has begun in earnest and it will only benefit the association,” former treasurer P Mahendra said. Not too many members were willing to comment though. The HCA has been run by an Administrator since February.