During his playing days Sourav Ganguly played with lot of passion , pride and determination and went down as one of India’s greatest captains . There was huge gung-ho when he was elected BCCI president . But few realised that after three years at the helm he was unceremoniously dumped by the BCCI . Denied a second term as some reports stated Sourav was keen to continue as BCCI president but the BCCI mandarins had other thoughts. As Dada made way , a member of the 1983 World Cup winning team 67- year-old Roger Binny took over as the new BCCI president and was elected unopposed .
Sourav’s exit came as surprise to many since the Supreme Court had allowed the Board of Control of Cricket for India to make amendments to its constitution, relaxing the cooling-off period, which now clears the way for the board’s secretary Jay Shah and president Sourav Ganguly to retain their positions and serve out another three-year term . The top court’s remarks came during a hearing on the Board’s plea to amend its constitution in order to eliminate the required cooling-off period for office holders across state cricket associations and the BCCI, including its president and secretary.
Sourav’s ouster has caused a furore , since some members of his team were either retained or elevated . Jay Shah, son of Union Home Minister remains Secretary, Arun Dhumal , brother of Union I&B and Sports Minister Anurag Thakur got a big elevation from Treasurer to new IPL Chairman . Congress leader Rajeev Shukla became the Vice- president and BJP leader from Mumbai Ashish Shelar is the new BCCI secretary who apparently was backed by former BCCI and ICC president Sharad Pawar.
What has angered Sourav’s fans was not only his ouster from BCCI but also his name was not considered for the ICC chairman post. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has targeted her guns on the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Central government for allegedly depriving former Indian cricket skipper Sourav Ganguly by not nominating him for the ICC chairman’s post, terming it an act of “shameless political vendetta”.
During his tenure as BCCI president Sourav has been accused of sitting in selection meetings . His inept handling of Virat Kohli’s captaincy issue created a major controversy. And some pundits were off the view that it was Secretary Jay Shah who was calling the shots and taking all the major BCCI decisions. Off the field there were speculations that there was pressure on Dada to join the BJP and become it’s face against Mamata Banerjee and TMC and he did not oblige despite hosting Union Home Minister Amit Shah at home for dinner. Hence he was dumped as BCCI president. Or perhaps Ganguly was a novice and did not foresee the winds of change in the BCCI with Jay Shah’s presence – Narendra Modi cricket stadium in Ahmedabad had replaced Eden Gardens as the power centre of cricket.
Former India Wicket-keeper and from West Bengal Wriddhiman Saha apparently sought Dada’s help when Team India head Coach Rahul Dravid asked him to think about retirement . Ganguly apparently told Saha as he claimed should not worry for his place in the team as long as he is at the helm of the BCCI.
Out of ICC, and doing a U turn on CAB president polls first announcing his move to contest , Sourav has backed out and instead his elder brother Snehasish is now set to be new president to be elected unopposed on October 31. Hence Dada’s innings as administrator as of now is clearly over . What role he dons in the future only time will tell. As he is icon his move will be watched with keen interest . Watch this space .