Why should BCCI not come under the RTI Act, questions CIC head Sridhar Acharyulu

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Why should BCCI not come under the RTI Act, questions CIC head Sridhar Acharyulu

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SportsCafe Desk

07/12/2018

The Commissioner of the Central Information Commission (CIC) has demanded an explanation as to why the BCCI should not come under the RTI Act in light of various judicial orders and a law commission report. Acharyulu pointed out that the SC and other courts have also expressed the same doubts.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is considered to be one of the richest sporting bodies across the entire globe. However, it has carved up somewhat of an ill repute for itself in recent years due to certain corrupt individuals that were involved in its working. But the appointment of a Supreme Court mandated body in the form of the Committee of Administrators (CoA) has ensured that the BCCI maintain some sort of structure to their daily activities.

But CIC commissioner, Sridhar Acharyulu remained unconvinced of the impact that the CoA must have had on the BCCI as he demanded a thorough explanation as to why the sporting body is not considered under the RTI Act.

"It is the responsibility of the CIC to put an end to this prolonging uncertainty which makes the BCCI non-transparent and unaccountable without any moral backing and legal reasoning," Information Commissioner Sridhar Acharyulu told PTI sources.

Acharyulu has asked the BCCI and the the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports to offer a detailed explanation for the same after the latter failed to give a satisfactory response to an RTI applicant, Ms Geeta Rani, who wanted to know the provisions and guidelines under which the BCCI has been representing India and selecting players for the country over the past decade.

The ministry responded by saying that it had no information available and since BCCI has not been declared as public authority under the RTI Act, therefore the RTI application wouldn’t be forwarded to the BCCI.

"Her question whether it is 'a Team India' or 'Team BCCI', raises an issue of exclusive authorisation of the BCCI to select team for India. In fact, this exclusiveness of authorisation created a monopoly in favour of federal body of sports for cricket called the BCCI and because of which all its wealth is created," Acharyulu said.

The CIC Commissioner further went on to add that the Supreme Court and other high courts have, on multiple occasions, expressed similar views on the same as they said that since the BCCI performed a public function and it is straight away related to public activity hence the cricketing body should be accountable to the public in general.

"There have been several doubts raised by Ministry of Law and Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, even after the recommendation of the law commission as to whether the BCCI do come under the purview of RTI Act.

"The commission directs the CPIO/authorised representative of the BCCI to explain why the commission should not declare the BCCI as public authority in view of various judicial pronouncements and the law commission's recommendation in its 275th report," he added.

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