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Pawar Caught and Bowled
|by Dr. Rajinder Puri|
The issue regarding former BCCI president Sharad Pawar’s involvement in an IPL bid seems straightforward enough. The bid was made by a Pune based construction company, City Corporation. The Pawar family owns 16 percent of City Corporations shares. After media claimed possession of documents proving that City Corporation was a bidder, Pawar and his daughter continued to stoutly deny that they were in any way involved with the IPL bid.
Pawar has not denied the veracity of the media report. His defence is that the bid was made by the Managing Director of the company, Mr Anirudha Deshpande, in his personal capacity. Pawar claims that there is a resolution of the company’s board opposing the proposal to make a bid. However, the board allowed Deshpande to make the bid in his personal capacity. It also “allowed him to use the name of City Corporation”. It was made clear to Deshpande that other members of the board were in no way involved.
Pawar’s claim has received strong support from Lalit Modi. It is difficult to judge whether that support is a plus point or a minus point. Not surprisingly opposition demands for Pawar’s resignation have already surfaced. Pawar should certainly be sacked. Not necessarily because he was involved in the bid. He should be sacked because despite being the president of BCCI and a Union cabinet minister he is capable of such monumental incompetence.
What legal value has a board resolution which can always be amended or even introduced later? The moot point is that the bid was made in the name of City Corporation. If a legal dispute were to arise with other franchise partners or any other party related to the bid, who would be accountable – Anirudha Deshpande individually or City Corporation? If Sharad Pawar does not know the obvious answer, does he deserve to be a minister?
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