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BCCI to reject Modi's plea; to meet as per schedule

Last updated on: April 24, 2010 13:54 IST

The Board of Control for Cricket in India top brass is in no mood to consider embattled Indian Premier League commissioner Lalit Modi's plea to defer the Governing Council meeting by five days and made it clear that it will go ahead as per schedule.

The BCCI has already told Modi that it would not change the date of the meeting as allegations of financial irregularities and the entire controversies related to IPL were far too serious to differ the meeting any further.

Modi had on Friday sought five days time to prepare himself for the Governing Council meeting which is expected to take a hard stand and even press for his removal.

"I need to prepare the documents to support my replies to all the questions... I have worked for you (BCCI) for five long years without taking any money... consider giving me just five days for the documents," Modi had said.

A top BCCI source said that there was no question of postponing the meeting and it was upto Modi to attend or not.

"Modi can come to the meeting and plead his case. If he doesn't have the relevant documents to defend himself, he can tell the Governing Council members at the meeting. We know he has been busy with IPL but that doesn't mean he cannot even attend the meeting," the source said.

"It is better for him to come to the meeting and explain his stand rather than keeping it. If he has nothing to hide why is he seeking five days time," the source said.

The 'anti-Modi' mood within the BCCI is quite clear with the entire top brass and most of the Governing Council member boycotting the award function in Mumbai on Friday night.

The BCCI officials are also planning to skip the IPL final on Sunday.

Meanwhile, there have been unconfirmed reports that former BCCI president and Nationalist Congress Party leader Sharad Pawar has asked the BCCI president Shashank Manohar to give Modi some time to defend himself by postponing the meeting by five days.

But no BCCI official confirmed the development. Modi's decision not to move court, questioning the validity of the April 26 meeting has also raised speculation that a compromise formula is being worked out.

But with the mounting pressure of BCCI to take a hard stand and clean up the entire IPL mess would make it tough for Modi to find an escape route this time around.

Pawar is expected to meet the top brass of BCCI in Mumbai on Saturday to take stock of the situation in the wake of the raging controversy. The top BCCI officials will also apprise him of the steps that they are contemplating to restore their image.

Modi has already been sent feelers to step down voluntarily from the post of IPL commissioner and chairman to tide over the crisis but in case he refuses to do so, BCCI may be forced to pass a resolution and oust him.

The BCCI source said that the president is empowered to remove him as per the board constitution and there would be no legal hassles in case such an option is exercised.

Modi's style of functioning has not gone down well with the BCCI officials and the Govering Council members. BCCI's media and finance committee chairman Rajiv Shukla, who is also a Governing Council member, had questioned his style of functioning and had even pointed it out to president Manohar.

In a letter in January, Shukla had expressed concerns about Modi's functioning and how things related to IPL were being finalised without taking the Governing Council into confidence.

"The reason I am saying this is that I being a member of the Governing Council, I am neither informed nor consulted about any deal and I have got to know such information through press releases. I am quite confident that such commercials are neither discussed with the Governing Council members because had this been the case the committee would have actually decided together," Shukla said.

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