The Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) has called a special general body meeting on July 29 to discuss major proposed changes to its constitution, including abolishing voting rights of international cricketers, allowing individuals above 70 to hold posts, and making the Apex Council act through the secretary instead of the CEO.
Each state association under the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had to change its constitution following the Supreme Court order on the Lodha Committee’s recommendations. The Lodha Committee gave voting rights to all former international players in their respective association, barred any individual from holding a post after reaching 70 years of age, and in an attempt to make administration more professional, gave more power to the respective Chief Executive Officers to run the BCCI and state associations.
In a notice about the proposed changes sent to all its members, the MCA explained that it has clubs as its members and there is no individual voter in the association. Instead the MCA wants international players to be made associate members without any voting right.
“No individual member like Patron members, donor members, etc. has any voting rights. Also the Lodha Committee had only recommended that International players should be granted memberships of the Association. Assigning voting rights to international cricketers would amount to altering the foundation of the applicant Association. However, international players can be Associate Members and shall be invited and shall attend the meeting and make their contributions/suggestions,” the MCA proposal states.
With respect to the 70-year age limit, the MCA feels the “disqualifications are too wide”, and there is no reason to impose restrictions on members of the Governing Council. According to the MCA, if persons without sufficient experience are made to represent its interests in the BCCI, there will be no recognition for Mumbai’s contribution to Indian cricket. In order to protect the interests of the MCA, people with experience of negotiation and personal interaction with other member associations should be made the representatives.
“Disqualification on the basis of age is neither fair nor practical. There are many examples of administrators who have served the game of cricket beyond the age of 70 years. MCA owes much of its success to the great leadership of administrators who contributed to the Association even after they were 70 years old. MCA strongly feels that the game should not be deprived of their expertise,” the MCA explanation reads.
The Indian Express spoke to some former cricketers, who opposed the proposal of abolishing their voting rights. “They can’t make any change to the constitution because as per the Supreme Court order, if any changes need to be made by any association, they will have to approach the Supreme Court first. Only after the Supreme Court gives its nod can the association make these changes,” a former India cricketer said.