BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly quits as director of RPSG-owned ATK Mohun Bagan to avoid conflict of interest

Dubai: BCCI president Sourav Ganguly has quit his position as a director in Indian Super League (ISL) club ATK Mohun Bagan on Wednesday. The ATK Mohun Bagan FC is owned by RPSG Ventures Pvt Ltd, who won the rights for the new IPL team in Lucknow on Monday with a record bid of INR 7,090 crore.

Ganguly’s move is seen as a bid to avoid conflict of interest as the RPSG group is now a part of the IPL bandwagon. “I have resigned,” Ganguly said to Cricbuzz on Wednesday. As per the ATK Mohun Bagan FC’s website, Ganguly’s name is mentioned as a Director with Sanjiv Goenka as Chairman of the Board of Directors.

While the conflict-of-interest controversy settles down, another one is taking shape with regards to CVC Capital, who were awarded with Ahmedabad IPL franchise after bidding INR 5625 crores.

Former IPL commissioner Lalit Modi was shocked at the BCCI not doing a thorough check on CVC Capitals’ sporting assets, including investing in a betting company in the United Kingdom. “I am shocked that the BCCI did not do their homework and did not check that one of the bidders also owns a betting company. CVC Capital apparently owns 80 per cent of Sky Betting. How does anybody control anti-corruption in such cases?”

“If the owners of a team are also the owners of a betting company, it defeats the purpose of not allowing the promoters of betting in India where betting is illegal. I am shocked that the BCCI let it happen. They should disqualify the owners and award the franchise to the second-best bidder.”

Modi’s explanation comes after he tweeted on Tuesday, “I guess betting companies can buy an IPL team, must be a new rule. Apparently one qualified bidder also owns a big betting company. What next? Does BCCI not do its homework? What can Anti-Corruption do in such a case? #cricket.”

Asked on how CVC capitals has been working in acquiring other sporting properties despite investing in a betting company, Modi said, “It is ok that they are participating in other leagues because they allow betting companies. There is a problem here because in India betting is not allowed. Already you have had a betting scandal (in 2013), that is the problem.”

The Lucknow and Ahmedabad franchises will take part in the IPL from 2022 season onwards. As of now, there is no clarity on rules for player retention for the current eight franchises in the IPL.

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