Amid the ongoing feud between the Board of Cricket Council of India (BCCI) and the Lodha committee to implement the recommended reforms, sacked BCCI president Anurag Thakur on Saturday told the Supreme Court that a contemptuous portion of his affidavit was dictated by International Cricket Council (ICC) chairman Shashank Manohar.
The apex court had sacked Thakur for his alleged attempts to stall the Lodha panel recommendations which were approved by the court. Thakur has now stepped up to clarify the court’s decision as he explained the events related to the filing of his affidavit, dated 15 October 2016. Thakur stated that it all started during an ICC meeting in South Africa and now the Supreme Court has asked Thakur to tender fresh, unequivocal and categorical apology in a contempt case.
“During my visit to Cape Town, South Africa, on 12 October 2016 for an ICC meeting, I brought the order of the SC to the notice of ICC chairman Shashank Manohar and showed Manohar the points and basis on which I was going to depose in the affidavit before the SC with a view to ensure that the discussion that had taken place was accurately placed on record before the court,” said Thakur, as reported by the Times of India.
“Thereafter, Manohar personally dictated a portion of my affidavit. The dictation was taken down by my executive assistant Krishna Pophale in my presence. At the end of this dictation, Manohar had also remarked that it was natural for me to ask him for a clarification as I was not a lawyer and did not understand the nitty gritties of the issue. Accordingly, para 3 and 4 of my affidavit dated October 15, 2016, filed before the Supreme Court are based on the dictation of Manohar,” he added.
Thakur also stated that ICC CEO Dave Richardson had agreed to the portions dictated by Manohar by way of an email dated October 14, 2016. He believes that the facts and events mentioned in the mail were then presented to the Supreme Court stating that he had tried to mislead the court and had committed perjury and contempt.
Thakur noted that the Supreme Court, however, chose to initiate suo motu criminal prosecution and contempt proceedings against him without hearing the version of events put forward by BCCI counsel Kapil Sibal. He said that there was no intention to undermine the apex court's judgment or an attempt to commit perjury or contempt by seeking a clarificatory letter from the ICC chairman.