Written by Shamik Chakrabarty | Kolkata | Updated: September 5, 2018 9:45:26 am
CK Khanna is the acting president of BCCI. (Source: PTI file)
Making a departure from its earlier stance, the Committee of Administrators (CoA) has approved BCCI acting president CK Khanna’s week-long trip, along with his executive assistants, to the UAE during the Asia Cup, with all expenses paid by the cricket board. Khanna is scheduled to reach Dubai on September 22 and will return after the final. The Asia Cup will be played from September 15-28.
The CoA, headed by Vinod Rai, had earlier nixed BCCI acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary’s travel to Colombo for the Nidahas Trophy in March. It had also cut short the trip to the UK of Choudhary and cricket board CEO Rahul Johri, when they wanted to stay back to watch a couple of India-England matches in July, after the ICC Annual Conference in Dublin. The CoA had also asked Choudhary to explain his Bhutan visit in June when, according to the email sent by the Committee, the acting secretary had gone “essentially to survey the availability of cricketing equipment, cricket grounds, suitability of soil/clay available for preparation of pitches, etc.”
With the new BCCI constitution already registered and the AGM due in a couple of months — where new committees will be formed — a source close to the CoA described Khanna’s visit as a “farewell trip”. BCCI treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry, too, would be allowed to travel, with the board bearing the expenses, if he wants.
The acting secretary and the CEO are going to Dubai as well during the Asia Cup, but they will attend the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) meetings and will be the Asian body’s guests.
“It’s a farewell trip for CK Khanna. If the treasurer wants, he can go also. The ACC is bearing the expenses of Amitabh Choudhary and Rahul Johri. The BCCI will bear all expenses for Khanna, as he has requested the CoA. The CoA felt as it will be the last few days in the BCCI (for the existing office-bearers), they should be allowed to travel for their last series. If Anirudh Chaudhry wants, the CoA will clear his plans too,” the source told The Global Express News.
When this paper contacted Khanna, he said: “It’s a non-issue.” The acting president, it ought to be said, has travelled the least among the three office-bearers.
A source close to the BCCI treasurer, meanwhile, responded by saying: “Anirudh Chaudhry’s travels are not tied to the apron strings of the CoA. He travels according to his availability, his programme and his requirement to travel. Knowing him, he will surely not approach the CoA to seek permission to travel, when the CoA is not allowing him to function as per the new BCCI constitution. If there’s a policy for travel for the Asia Cup and it is communicated to him, he may take a call on it. Otherwise if he wishes to travel, he will make his own arrangements. He would not wish to burden the CoA with these petty decisions in their last couple of months on the job.”
Senior BCCI officials travelling overseas for tournaments used to be the norm earlier. But the CoA, of late, had made it clear that unless the office-bearers were going for any official work, no tours would be sanctioned.
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