Apex Council of HCA issues show cause notice to Azharuddin; levels serious charges

Abhijit Sen Gupta
Abhijit Sen Gupta

Hyderabad: The Apex Council of the Hyderabad Cricket Association has hit back at President Mohammed Azharuddin levelling a cluster of serious charges in a show cause notice today.

The council stated that the President had acted in a manner that has lowered the dignity of the HCA in the eyes of the other state associations and the BCCI.

“The Apex Council is left with no option but to issue the Show Cause Notice and invoke rule 40 (6) pending inquiry…(it is) proceeding into complaints and charges of misconduct,” it was stated in the notice. One of the charges was related to an earlier disclosure that Azhar had become a mentor of a club named Northern Warriors which participates in a T20 tournament in Dubai.

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This fact was not communicated to the HCA nor to the BCCI. The tournament is not recognised by the BCCI, it was stated. So the deed comes under the issue of conflict of interest as envisaged under Rule 38 (1) (iii) of the Memorandum of Association and Rules and Regulations-2018 of the HCA.

The second charge against Azhar was that he had not informed the HCA or BCCI about retirement from cricket before 14th December, 2019.

“As you are aware, a period of five years should have lapsed for you to contest an election from the time of your informing the HCA and the BCCI about the date of your retirement,” the notice stated. Based on this fact the Council held that Azhar was not eligible to contest the election in 2019 in the first place as per the Lodha Committee recommendations.

The third charge is related to the fact that Azhar had addressed a letter dated 11.4.2021 to the Canara Bank, Dilsukhnagar branch, where the HCA maintains its account, requesting the bank to freeze the operations of the HCA account until further instructions from the President. It was alleged that Azhar had falsely stated that he was one of the two signatories for operating the account.

“It is apparent that you had deliberately tried to stall all financial transactions of the HCA and cripple the Apex Council from discharging its financial obligations,” the notice stated.

Azhar’s appointment of Justice Deepak Verma as Ombudsman of the HCA was also under fire. “You had illegally and unlawfully and in a dictatorial fashion, tried to foist Justice Deepak Verma as Ombudsman going against the will of the General Body which had appointed Justice Nisar Ahmed Kakru as Ombudsman and Justice Meena Kumari as Ethics Officer,” read the charges.

The long list of charges against Azhar also included the fact that by interfering in the selection committee he had caused the Hyderabad Ranji team to be demoted, the fact that he chose to represent the HCA at the BCCI SGM when the body had appointed Shivlal Yadav, changing the official password of the HCA’s official email and a false police complaint against Surendra Agarwal, and Syed Moizuddin, without verifying facts.

“In view of the above stated misdeeds, the reputation of the HCA had been damaged. The Apex council Office Bearers of the Hyderabad Cricket Association are therefore issuing the above Show Cause Notice to you calling for your explanation within seven days of the date of receipt of this notice, failing which, the Apex council would initiate action in accordance with it Memorandum of Association and and Rules and Regulaltions-2018.” it was stated.

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