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Why isn’t recusal good enough for Roger Binny’s conflict of interest?


Is Shashank Manohar going too far with his conflict of interest reforms?

South Zone selector Roger Binny is under the hammer.

The proposed 29-point-agenda foresees serving notice to selectors who have financial or business interests with players.

Stuart Binny, Roger’s son, is currently a contender for the ODI and Test sides.

He enjoys the support of Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Virat Kohli.

Binny Sr. has always recused himself from committee deliberations whenever his son’s case came up.

A senior BCCI official, speaking to Times of India, said:

“I believe he should step down from his post. His work as national selector has been impeccable but with Stuart part of the Indian team, the ‘conflict of interest’ issue might come up in different quarters.

The board is planning to implement the points suggested by Manohar into its constitution and if and when it is done, Roger’s position may directly be in conflict.The rest of the selectors still have one more year on their term and may be asked to continue.”

The precedent cited is that of Manohar’s son Adwait stepping down from his positions in the BCCI soon after his dad took over the board to avoid any conflict of interest.

BCCI treasurer Anirudh Chaudhary said:

“The points made by the president are only suggestions at the moment, which will come up for discussion at the AGM. If the consensus in the board is on incorporating some of these points into the constitution, it’ll be done.

However, regarding conflict of interest over Roger, we are not part of the selection meetings and don’t know if Roger is present when his son’s name comes up for discussion. So it’s very difficult to prove a conflict in this case.”

The said requirements are way too stringent.

What the BCCI seems to imply is that an ex-cricketer can be a selector as long as his relatives are not competing for a spot in any of the sides the national selectors oversee.

Once his relatives are serious challengers, out goes the selector!

The practice of recusal is well-known and is often used to address a perceived conflict of interest.

To provide an analogy:

A university professor whose son or daughter were students in his or her class would not be stopped from teaching their class.

He or she would however not be allowed to set examination papers or mark results of the entire class.

The above is an example of recusal at its simplest.

It is the principle that ought to be applied to conflict of interest issues with national selectors when the reasons why they are in contravention are filial.

Conflict of interest issues, such as above, could be handled on a case-by-case basis.

The rules follow the principles and not vice-versa.

Shashank Manohar is inclined towards a stricter interpretation of the law. Even a perceived conflict of interest is to be summarily dealt with.

An India player is worth much more on the IPL auction block than a junior or Ranji cricketer.

Follow this thread of thought and you’ll understand the reasoning behind the latest BCCI thrust.

The law can be an ass sometimes and a stricter law a bigger ass.

Are the proposed diktats practical given the current dispensation where administrators and ex-cricketers have their fingers in more than one pie?

Can the BCCI attract enough ex-sportspersons to keep its machinery going?

Its pockets are deep enough.

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About LINUS FERNANDES

I have been an IT professional with over 12 years professional experience. I'm an B.Sc. in Statistics, M.Sc in Computer Science (University of Mumbai) and an MBA from the Cyprus International Institute of Management. I'm also a finance student and have completed levels I and II of the CFA course. Blogging is a part-time vocation until I land a full-time position. I am also the author of three books, Those Glory Days: Cricket World Cup 2011, Best of Googli Hoogli and Poems: An Anthology, all available on Amazon Worldwide.

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