Cricket Board of India’s (BCCI) ethics officer Justice (retd) DK Jain on Thursday found Rupa Gurunath, daughter of former board president N Srinivasan and Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) president, guilty of “conflict of interest”. Roop, the first woman president of BCCI’s affiliated units, is a whole-time director of India Cements Limited (ICL). Roopa has been found guilty of indirect conflict of interest due to ICL’s close ties to Chennai Super Kings Cricket Limited (CSKCL).
Jain wrote in his order, “All these facts show that a web of many units have been woven under the ICL group including CSKCL. The management and operation of all these units was directly and indirectly with the Board of ICL, yet the defense maintained that ICL had no stake in CSKCL.
“Given the prevailing factual circumstances, it would be safe to conclude that the respondent (Rupa), as whole time director and promoter of ICL, has a close relationship with the IC Shareholders Trust and the directors of CSKCL who have a franchise agreement with BCCI. . It is a form of conflict of interest under Rule 1(1).’
This could be one of Jain’s final orders as his contract expires on June 7 and it is for the BCCI to decide whether to extend the contract or not. It will be interesting to see what will be the stand of BCCI and whether they ask Roopa to step down from the post of TNCA President. The Board may also allow the State Union to appeal against this decision to the new Ethics Officer or to the Court.