Sub-judice case against NSC withdrawn, CAN officials hopeful of ban lift

Published On: October 28, 2018 08:15 AM NPT By: Sanjay Thapa

KATHMANDU, Oct 28: As the elected Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) decided to withdraw the case that it filed at the Supreme Court against the National Sports Council (NSC) long time ago, cricket officials are now hopeful of the International Cricket Council (ICC) lifting the ban on the CAN imposed two and a half years ago.

A meeting of the elected-CAN held in Kathmandu on Saturday decided to withdraw the case that was sub-judice in the apex court for over two years.

“We were compelled to withdraw the case as the ICC insisted that we must settle the court case first. As the ICC officials reiterated that they would lift the ban only after we withdraw our case,’’ the elected CAN’s General Secretary Ashok Nath Pyakurel said, “Therefore, we decided to become flexible to find a solution of this long-standing problem.” 

He said that the ICC’s Independent Committee did not work as it had earlier promised even as the CAN passed the statute as asked by the ICC. He claimed the CAN had done everything as per the ICC’s condition. 

Likewise, CAN also formed a five-member team of President Chatur Bahadur Chand, Diwakar Ghale, Sailesh Kumar Chaudhary and Sanjay Singh along with Pyakurel with a mandate to end the year-long deadlock. 

Nepali cricket has been mired in crisis since the ICC suspended the membership of CAN in April 2016 after an intervention by the Nepal Sports Council (NSC) which saw existence of two parallel cricket governing bodies in Nepal with the NSC citing that the CAN election lacked validity. 

Against the NSC’s claim that the elected CAN was messed up, the CAN had formed a new committee led by Ramesh Silwal, and Chand’s faction filed a case in the Supreme Court in January against the NSC. The case was still sub-judice.

ICC guidelines don’t allow government interference or unsanctioned elections in recognized cricket governing body for the respective country. In case of any government interference that is subject to immediate suspension or termination. The ICC then suspended the CAN on April 24, 2016 citing government interference. 

ICC then formed an eight-member Advisory Group to solve the current crisis of cricket administration in Nepal. After two months of the disagreement by the members of elected CAN, mainly by President Chand and General Secretary Pyakurel on several provisions, the Special General Meeting of the CAN passed the amendment draft bill for the statute amendments of the cricket governing body. 

The ICC sent letters to both the elected CAN and the NSC last month to get informed about the legal process of the case as well as to ask the CAN to withdraw the case and the NSC to formally dissolve the ad hoc committee. 

The ICC Advisory Group has already endorsed the new statute passed by the CAN. According to the new statute, a five-member independent team of the CAN was asked to hold the election. For that, the elections have been held in 37 districts. 

The elected CAN on Saturday decided to withdraw its case and demanded the ICC to lift the ban imposed on the cricket governing body after the advisory committee’s first meeting requested the CAN to withdraw the case and the NSC to dissolve the ad hoc committee. 

“We decided to withdraw the case to take the Nepali cricket forward which has been deadlocked because the NSC and the ICC had set the main reason of the ban to be the sub-judice case,’’ Pyakurel added. 

If the ban is not lifted even as the elections have already been conducted, the statute has been passed without any changes and the sub-judice case has been withdrawn from the court, the entire responsibility for this should be owned by the NSC and the advisory committee, said the CAN. 

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