GUWAHATI, July 10 - Bollywood and cricket are the sultans of swings � people associated with these sometimes pull chords in political and social lives. Interestingly, these two elements have an age-old relationship right from the Nawab of Pataudi-Sharmila Tagore marriage to Virat Kohli-Anuska Sharma romance.
Here in our own State, the Assam Cricket Association (ACA) has became the talk of the town with leaders fighting over stakes.
The ACA issue is drawing front-page attention of newspapers and has become a hot topic in the local TV news channels. The last ACA governing body (GB) meeting saw a big hue and cry. More than that, after the meeting one member even filed an FIR in a police station against another member. This speaks volumes about the internal situation in the ACA management council.
For the last few years, ACA top officials have been in the centre of controversy for different issues. Courts have prevented its annual general meeting due to alleged anomalies in accounts, misuse of funds in the construction of the Barsapara stadium, not changing the governing council, not providing proper facilities to the players and other issues.
A group of former cricketers have also raised concern over the bad governance of the ACA officials in the last couple of years and staged a dharna at the Barsapara stadium on July 8 when an ACA governing body meeting was going on. The former players alleged that the activities of the present ACA officials are not satisfactory and they want change in the system. They alleged that Assam cricket is not safe in the hands of the people in the present ACA body.
But the moot question is: why only cricket, Assam has State associations in all sports with the Assam Olympic Association as the apex body and no fingers have been pointed at them. If one reads the lines correctly, one will find that most of the old officials are controlling the reins of their respective associations for years. However, as the other organizations don�t have glamour or money as the ACA has, people hardly have any interest in their affairs.
It is known to all that every sports organization has their own constitutions and accordingly, they set up their body to function their activities. They have to organize annual general meetings and constitute managing committees. The ACA also has its constitution and altogether 97 members, representing 33 districts and GB, have voting powers for constituting a new body. One wonders why these members do not get their act together to remove the present batch of ACA top brass to bring Assam cricket administration on the right track. People who want change in the ACA executive council may convince the voters for the change. But unfortunately, the last two ACA AGMs had to be abandoned due to court directives.
Whatever it is, prior to the Ranji Trophy season, this time Assam will play in the A group against the country�s best teams, therefore, the time is not proper to create any kind of unsporting atmosphere as it may affect the players. Now Assam has some sons of the soil like Sarupam Purkayastha, Gokul Sharma, Tarjinder Singh, Sib Sankar Roy, Pallav Das, Abu Nechim Ahmed, Arup Das, Krishna Das and others, who have been excellent in the domestic cricket. If they can maintain their last season�s form they may catch the eyes of the senior national selectors. Now the State has adequate infrastructure. Places like Tinsukia, Mangaldai, Dibrugarh, Goalpara, etc., can host BCCI tournaments, including first class matches. Earlier, this kind of infrastructure, including a giant exclusive cricket stadium, was beyond imagination. But times have changed and everything is in our grasp. Even then we should be concerned for the betterment of sports in the State. The public organizations are not anybody�s personal property. All have to go through the democratic process.