The Board of Control for Cricket in India displays a list of monthly payments of ₹25 lakh and above to claim transparency in its deals. However, the salary of the BCCI chief executive Rahul Johri is never mentioned in that list.
The BCCI, for the last three years, has been sharing a list of payments of above ₹25 lakh every month on the official website of the board. The long list of accounts includes salaries of coaches and players; amounts paid to State associations, service and equipment providers, government taxes and for various other services. Surprisingly, or intriguingly, the monthly list does not include the salary paid to the CEO Rahul Johri. The BCCI CEO reportedly draws ₹30 lakhs per month after income tax and other mandatory deductions.
In the list which includes ₹1,89,37,500 paid to India coach Ravi Shastri under the head ‘professional fee’ or ₹40,50,000 India A and U-19 coach Rahul Dravid has notably omitted Johri’s salary, Rahul Johri’s name and payment remain conspicuous by their absence.
The hard to guess the reason is rather vague and raises serious concerns about the cash-rich BCCI’s transparency. This also makes the exercise of disclosing the payments pointless and void of trust.
Indian Express has quoted a BCCI official as explaining that the CEO is a staff of the BCCI and the list put up displays payments made only to vendors. Hard to believe. The list also includes salaries paid to the national coaches which, of course, are the regular employees of BCCI.
“What you see on the list are payments made to vendors. Because of the contractual nature of their employment, players and coaches also come under this category. The CEO is an employee of the board. The nature of his appointment is different from the players or coaches. That’s why his salary is not there on the website,” the official further explains.
However, records of the BCCI working committee meeting held on October 18, 2015, when the decision to go public with these payments was taken, does not mention that it’s restricted to payments made only to vendors.
In the minutes of the meeting under the heading “BCCI will display the following information on its website” item No 4 is “All payments made by the BCCI over Rs 25 lakh”, Indian Express has reported.
Some of the BCCI members are viewing the exclusion of Johri’s salary from the list as an anomaly rather than a rule. “It’s a matter of convenience to say the CEO is a staff and coaches, players are vendors. It’s a fictitious distinction. It was never decided that this list would be a selective one. All payments above Rs 25 lakh are supposed to be mentioned,” said a BCCI member, who had attended that working committee meeting in Mumbai three years ago.
Meanwhile, some of the BCCI members have vindictively started the blame-game against CoA. The committee has released the hefty travel bills of the office bearers recently but have failed to take the cognizance when it comes to Johri’s salary.