Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid meet to discuss roadmap to improve NCA

In a relief for former India captain Rahul Dravid, the BCCI ethics officer DK Jain on Thursday dismissed the conflict-of-interest complaint against him, saying it was “bereft of any merit”.

“I have rejected the complaint. Rahul Dravid doesn’t have conflict of interest,” Jain told PTI after issuing the order. “I am convinced that on facts at hands, a case of conflict of interest as enshrined in the Rules is not made out. Resultantly, the complaint is dismissed being bereft of any merit,” read Thursday’s order.

MPCA life member Sanjiv Gupta had filed a complaint against Dravid, alleging conflict of interest in his current role as Head of Cricket at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) and being an India Cements employee.

Jain had conducted a second round of hearing on Tuesday when Dravid was represented by his lawyer.

The 46-year-old former India captain had earlier explained his case in a personal hearing held in Mumbai on September 26.

In his earlier submission, Dravid had defended himself saying he has taken leave of absence from India Cements.

When Dravid was appointed, the former India captain was told by BCCI that a ‘leave of absence’ letter from India Cements, where he has been a vice-president for a decade, was enough to take up the new job at NCA and that it would free him of conflict of interest. The former cricketer did likewise.

“It is leave of absence which is what I have been asked to do at that stage. I will appear with my lawyer and represent my own case,” Dravid had told The Indian Express.

As per Rule 38 (4) of BCCI constitution, no individual can hold more than one post at the same time. However, in Dravid’s case the ethics officer has interpreted the rule a bit differently while in the order passed in June, Jain had found Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman conflicted for holding multiple posts.

“…mere holding of posts by an individual associated with the BCCI…may not per-se be sufficient for arriving at the conclusion of existence of ‘conflict of interest’… (It) must also be tested on the anvil of reasonable apprehensions of, or actual favoritism, lack of objectivity, bias, benefits, etc.” the order read. —PTI Inputs