A day after the Islamabad High Court placed restrictions on Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) acting chairman Najam Sethi’s powers, the country’s cricket administrator filed a plea to reconsider the decision, the Daily Express reported on Thursday.
In response to the court’s directives, the PCB claimed in its appeal that it was impossible for the board’s new chairman to hold elections within 90 days. The PCB also requested the court that extra powers be given to it, including the permission for budgetary allocations, formation of committees, appointment of heads, selling of media rights as well as elections of regions, districts and zones.
In the plea it also warned that if the situation didn’t change, the Pakistan team’s participation in the international competitions would become increasingly difficult. The appeal counselled the government to discontinue its alleged interference in PCB’s affairs or else the International Cricket Council (ICC), the game’s administrator, would impose a ban on the Pakistan team.
A two-judge bench will hear the petition.
The senior IHC judge Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui had stopped the PCB acting chairman from taking important decisions.
In its plea launched by the PCB Chief Operating Officer Subhan Ahmed, the board argued that in the petition of Nadeem Ahmed Suddle there was no mention of the authorities of acting chairman for conducting the administrative affairs of the board. It maintained that the honorable judge gave the decision after hearing both the parties.
It maintained that it was beyond the jurisdiction of any court to give the Election Commission any responsibility in such a case. The petition maintained a court verdict would result in the suspension of the board activities. The national team would be unable to participate in international contests, if selection committees were not constituted. “And Pakistan’s failure to fulfill international commitments, might also result in the suspension of its membership,” it added.
The petition said the board would also be unable to sell the broadcasting rights if it was deprived of complete authority.
The petition further stated that the court had set a 90-day deadline for the election of a new chairman. However, it was impossible to hold election in such a short time as in many regions and districts the tenures of the office bearers had completed, many office bearers were working on ad hoc basis and many cases were in courts, the petition stated.
“There are bleak chances of the completion of the electoral college in the near future,” it said.
In the present circumstances when only a limited number of associations were in operational condition, it said, the idea to hold the election for a new PCB chairman did not appear realistic or workable.
‘Sethi should focus on polls’
Khalid Mehmood, a former chairman of the board, has advised the acting chairman to concentrate on holding PCB elections. Mehmood claimed that in the presence of Najam Sethi, the process of selling broadcasting rights could not be carried out in a transparent fashion.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 26th, 2013.