I don’t contest election to lose: DalmiyaJuly 28th, 2008 - 9:13 pm ICT by IANS
By Sirshendu Panth
Kolkata, July 28 (IANS) History favours incumbent Prasun Mukherjee, but challenger Jagmohan Dalmiya is banking on an anti-establishment swing as the two battle it out in the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) presidential election here Tuesday. The battle-hardened Dalmiya, making a determined bid to come back into cricket administration after 19 months in the wilderness, is upbeat on the eve of the CAB Annual General Meeting.
The Mukherjee loyalists, who have been pitted against the Dalmiya-led dissident lobby for all the key posts, are referring to the CAB’s age-old tradition of the official panel sailing through every time.
With the court-appointed observer retired justice Santosh Phoujdar barring two representatives of the affiliate units from attending on technical grounds, there will be 119 voters in the AGM to be held at the Eden Gardens which houses the CAB.
“I don’t contest elections to lose. The voters have seen me work for years in the CAB, which is a second home to me. They know how Bengal cricket can benefit from my experience. And I think Bengal cricket now needs me in view of the low which it has touched,” Dalmiya told IANS Monday.
The Dalmiya group has campaigned on the issue of Bengal’s demotion to the plate division of the Ranji Trophy and the CAB’s inability to get a coach for the state team for the current season. That none of the clubs have so far got the “few lakhs” which the powers-that-be in the Association had promised them for holding the Indian Premier League matches at the Eden Garden, has also become a campaign plank for the dissidents.
The official panel, on the other hand, is harping on the need for a harmonious relationship with the country’s apex body the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) which, they say, would become a casualty if Dalmiya ascends the CAB throne.
Dalmiya, a former BCCI chief, is at loggerheads with the Sharad Pawar-led board which has filed a case for embezzlement and even banned him.
Mukherjee also claims his CAB stint has seen more transparency and democracy in functioning.
“Dalmiya used to consult only three or four close people, leaving others in the dark on vital decisions. But I have always tried to take everybody along. And the CAB members have also seen how I worked for improving of facilities at the Eden,” Mukherjee said.
However, in contrast to the high-voltage election that Dalmiya and Mukherjee fought two years back that saw even state chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee taking sides, the run-up to the coming polls has been rather drab.
Dalmiya, who had scraped through by five vote in 2006 despite Bhattacharjee’s support for Mukherjee, is hoping to put up a repeat performance to regain his hold on the CAB and a platform to get back into prominence.
And for super cop Mukherjee, who never quite dreamt of heading the CAB till he was handpicked by the chief minister for the assignment, it is a fight to salvage his honour and prove to his supporters and detractors alike that he can win on his own mettle without help from his governmental bosses.
- Eden Gardens WC fiasco: Pranab Mukherjee to meet Sharad Pawar - Jan 30, 2011
- Dalmiya all set to continue unchallenged as CAB chief - Jul 27, 2010
- Eden Gardens likely to host remaining three World Cup matches: ICC - Feb 08, 2011
- Dalmiya meets Pranab on Eden fiasco - Jan 29, 2011
- Bengal cricket body lashes out at ICC, BCCI - Jan 27, 2011
- With polls coming, Bengal parties play on Eden Gardens fiasco - Jan 30, 2011
- Dalmiya re-elected CAB president - Jul 28, 2012
- ICC takes away India-England World Cup game from Eden Gardens (Roundup) - Jan 28, 2011
- ICC refuses to grant India-England match to Eden (Lead) - Jan 30, 2011
- Lorgat regrets Eden losing out on India-England game - Feb 03, 2011
- Dalmiya has a challenger in Samar Pal for top CAB post - Jul 21, 2012
- Eden Gardens to hold Sri Lanka ODI in December - Oct 09, 2009
- Pranab agrees to speak to ICC chief - Jan 30, 2011
- Eden to host a T20 and an ODI - Feb 24, 2011
- Work at Eden speeded up, CAB still hopeful about England tie - Jan 28, 2011
Tags: 19 months, annual general meeting, apex body, contest election, contest elections, cricket association of bengal, dissidents, eden garden, eden gardens, embezzlement, harmonious relationship, india bcci, jagmohan dalmiya, lakhs, loggerheads, loyalists, panth, ranji trophy, santosh, sharad pawar