TC Mathew & Co will have to move out of Kerala Cricket

The state cricket associations under BCCI are beginning to feel the ripple effect of Supreme Court’s directive to implement the Lodha Panel recommendations. On Thursday, responding to queries from state cricket bodies, the Lodha committee clarified to the state associations that any office-bearer who has cumulatively or separately completed nine years in office before or after July 18 will be disqualified from contesting elections.The directive virtually means that a majority of the state cricket associations including the Kerala Cricket Association (KCA) will have to elect new office-bearers. The current term of office-bearers is till July 2017 but if the directive of the Lodha panel is implemented in totality, it would certainly mean the end of the road for KCA’s current office bearers.KCA president TC Mathew is also one of the vice-presidents of BCCI and has served the state cricket body as an office-bearer for close to two decades now. Besides, Mathew also holds the post of vice-president in BCCI now. “Any individual who has cumulatively completed a period of 9 years as an office bearer of a state association stands disqualified from contesting elections or holding a post in the association. This will apply to any person as of the date of the election, and will include periods prior to the date of the judgment (18.07.2016),” the directive from the Lodha panel clarified in its email to BCCI.The current association secretary, Ananthanarayan, too will have to vacate his post as he has been an office-bearer in the KCA for two successive terms and has completed 11 years in office. Reacting to the development, Mathew said theKCA is waiting to hear from the BCCI with regard to imp ementation of Lodha reforms. “I think the BCCI should seek more time from Supreme Court and Lodha panel to implement these reforms. It can’t be implemented overnight. BCCI is our parent body and we will seek guidance from them,” he said.The BCCI officials are likely to go into a huddle to discuss the implications of Supreme Court in New Delhi on Monday . Some of BCCI officials have already expressed their apprehension regarding the implementation of Lodha recommendation in six months’ time. So BCCI may explore the possibility allowing the current dispensation in various state units to complete their term in front of Lodha. If Lodha agrees to their request, it may give the likes of Mathew some breathing space. The other two office-bearers in KCA, treasurer Jayesh George and A Syed Ziabudeen, haven’t exceeded their nine-year terms as office-bearers. Jayesh has been the treasurer for KCA for last six months though he was the joint secretary of the state body in the preceding two and a half-years. Ziabudeen has been holding the joint secretary’s post for last six months while he was the vice-president of the association in the previous term. But the Lodha panel in its recommendation had suggested the need for a coolingoff period between two terms which was accepted by the Supreme Court. If this directive is applied with effect from July 18, the date of Supreme Court order, then both Jayesh and Ziabudeen too will have to step aside.So changes are imminent in all state cricket bodies including the KCA. The only question is how soon it is going to take place.

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