HCA Apex Council rejects appointment of Verma

Azhar signs note of dissent on Ombudsman issue; League matches to start

By   |  Published: 7th Nov 2020  12:16 amUpdated: 7th Nov 2020  12:19 am

Hyderabad: In what could be a severe setback to president Mohammed Azharuddin, the Apex Council of Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) which met at Uppal Stadium on Friday, rejected the appointment of Justice (retd) Deepak Verma as Ombudsman.

R Vijayanand, secretary of the association, said Azharuddin signed a note of dissent in this regard. Azharuddin, however, said the appointment of Verma was already approved by Apex Council in the past and the AGM has to approve it only.

The other members of Apex Council _ Vijayanand, John Manoj (vice president), Naresh Sharma (joint secretary), Surender Agarwal (treasurer) and T Anuradha (member) _ didn’t approve the name of Justice Verma for the Ombudsman and Ethics Officer. They felt that the Ombudsman issue should be referred to the Annual General Meeting (AGM), which is scheduled for November 29 at 10 am at Uppal Stadium.

Interestingly, the Apex Council went against all the decisions of Azharuddin, including the AGM and the conduct of cricket matches. The former Indian captain had earlier vehemently opposed the idea of AGM and cricket matches in view of Covid-19.

However, the Apex Council thought otherwise and decided to hold the AGM. “We are going ahead with the AGM and the cricket matches with all the necessary precautions required for Covid-19. The league matches will start in all three divisions (three-day, two-day and one-day) in a phased manner,’’ said Vijayanand.

The Apex Council also decided to resume the Telangana Premier League in coordination of T Sports while the pension for former Ranji players will be given.The members have also given their consent to clearing off all the pending bills for the Year 2018-19 forthwith

However, the case of Ombudsman is getting murkier and controversial ever since Azharuddin had announced the appointment of Justice Verma in September. In fact, in the letter dated September 2 to Justice Verma, Azharuddin had informed of his appointment as Ombudsman and Ethics Officer of HCA for a period of one year with an honorarium of Rs 2 lakh per month. Subsequently, Justice Verma wrote a letter to Vijayanand accepting the post in the letter dated Nov 11.

However, the Apex Council members even separately sent a letter to Justice Verma that Azharuddin had no right to send the letter. But Azharuddin insisted that Apex Council had agreed for his appointment and two days ago Justice Verma, acting on the petitions filed by a few club secretaries particularly on the issue of conflict of interest and multiple club issues, sent letters to Vijayanand and Agarwal.

But today there was a new development much before the start of the Apex meeting when Justice Verma wrote that various disputes within HCA deem were deferred for six weeks in view of the Apex Council meeting. “I have got to know that an Apex Council meeting of HCA is happening and subsequently a date for AGM of HCA shall also be decided in the said meeting,’’ he said.


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