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BCCI chief ordered to resign

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India’s Supreme Court has ordered the country’s cricket board chief to resign for failing to implement reforms. The court on Monday told Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Anurag Thakur to quit.

It had recommended sweeping changes in the BCCI following allegations of spot-fixing and betting in the 2013 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) tournament. Cricket is the most popular sport in India.

The BCCI secretary, Ajay Shirke, has also been told to resign. The court said it would appoint observers to run cricket administration in India until a new president and secretary were appointed.

“Running BCCI was not a personal battle but a battle for the autonomy of the sports body,” Mr Thakur said in a statement.

“If the Supreme Court judges think that BCCI could do better under retired judges, I wish them luck. “My commitment to the best of Indian cricket and the autonomy of sports will always remain.”

In 2015 the top court set up a panel, headed by former chief justice RM Lodha, to recommend measures to overhaul the BCCI administration. It was formed following an investigation by a separate committee into wrongdoings during the 2013 IPL.

The Lodha panel submitted its recommendations to the court in January 2016, the majority of which the BCCI was asked to implement.

Some of the recommendations included the cricket board being subject to the right to information act, a ban on any official serving more than two consecutive terms, and prohibiting government ministers from contesting BCCI elections.

Despite several reminders, the BCCI was not able to meet the deadlines. “This is the logical consequence. Once the recommendations were accepted by the court, it had to be implemented. There were obstructions, there were impediments,” Justice (retired) Lodha said. “Obviously this had to happen, and it has happened.”

He added: “It’s a victory for the game of cricket and it will flourish, administrators come and go, ultimately it is for the game.” (BBC Sport)

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