BCCI Ombudsman AP Shah, who is investigating the conflict of interest issues plaguing Indian cricket, has delivered a strong recommendation in his first order. In case of Harbhajan Singh, Shah uses it to make a larger point about the need for all individuals – players,selectors,administrators – to disclose their affiliations in the context of conflict of interest.
The complaint, filed by Niraj Gunde, against Harbhajan said that he owned an apparel company called ‘Bhajji Sports’ which provided kits to at least six Ranji teams. In his response to Ombudsman, Harbhajan had stated that the apparel company wasn’t owned by him nor was he a beneficiary, and said it was owned by Mrs Avtar Kaur.
Conflict of interest roles : cricket coaching/training academies, sports management companies, sports apparel manufacturers
Former players like Brijesh Patel, Dilip Vengsarkar, Arshad Ayub, and Chetan Chauhan and others who run cricket academies and have a association position in of BCCI will have to chose one over the other.
“The Ombudsman recommends that all concerned individuals (cricketers, selectors, coaches, and administrators) should be required to make standard disclosures about their affiliations in the context of the conflict of interest rules (which may pertain, for example, to cricket coaching/training academies, sports management companies, sports apparel manufacturers, etc). If the disclosures reveal that an individual does have such an association, they may be asked to either terminate their association with such companies/academies, or asked to resign from their position as cricketer/selector/coach/administrator, as covered by the conflict of interest rules.” – Retired Justice AP Shah writes in his order.