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|May 2, 2000||
It happens only in IndiaAvinash Subramanium
Finally, they did what they're so good at. Passed the buck. And, not surprisingly, to the CBI.
As always, the CBI was called in. The specialists at investigating anything. Right from the loss of a prize cat. To getting to the bottom of issues that concern national security. And the latest match-fixing case is just one of the minor side-dishes on an already overflowing CBI plate.
Admittedly, it is a step in the right direction. (Perhaps the only step that would mean us getting anywhere near the bottom of this 'shit-filled' barrelled.) Just that, sometimes one wonders whether the CBI gets called in more out of the desire of all other parties to wash their hands of the case than to get to the bottom of the dog-pile.
Actually, if the recent past is anything to go by, the CBI always gets called in. Most of all, when nobody else has the gumption or the inclination to take the rap. Moral of the story: if it's too hot to handle, pass the case, and the buck, to the CBI.
Not surprisingly, the 'alleged accused' (now that's a first.) seem to have greeted this latest announcement more with indifference than fear. Almost like they know little is going to come out of it. This despite the CBI being one of the country's premier investigative agencies. Enough one would have thought to leave the 'tempted' quaking in their boots. But no, everyone continues to protest their innocence. Everyone still threatens to sue one and other. And we're still nowhere near revealing names. (Time to pass the buck to the Inter-pol?)
Meanwhile, accusations continue to fly thick and fast. A former official of the Prasar Bharati accuses Dalmiya of graft. (Or close. Just don't sue me for not knowing much about these underhand matters. It's not my area of specialisation, you know.) Naturally, in keeping with the trend in recent times, Dalmiya threatens to sue. Surprise, surprise, Dalmiya even sues. The man who probably knows a lot more than we give him credit for, Mark from WorldTel also gets into the act. (He has to. The gargoyle that the marriage of money and cricket has spawned has plenty to do with him and his 'vaunted marketing flair.' And if Sachin is involved, methinks Mark might have a lot to do with it.) And of course, even he threatens to sue. Only time and pressure will tell us how far these court cases go. After all, we've seen more than our fair share of them in the recent past. We've heard and read of other equally impulsive gentlemen who also seem to believe in the maxim: when exposed, threaten to sue. When that doesn't work, sue.
Incidentally, whatever happened to the garrulous Mr. Lele? It's a surprise he's managed to keep to himself through all this. One would have thought this was just the kind of environment the 'look-my-foot-is-in-my-mouth-again' secretary of the BCCI would have jumped right in to. Maybe the egg on his face after the 'alleged rubbishing' of the Hansie episode has still not cleared. Or worse, maybe he's readying himself for weightier things like exchanging favours in the upcoming selection meeting. Am I being a bit too harsh? You bet I am. It freaks me out how a man who repeatedly bad-mouths and belittles the national team in public still gets to keep the job. Even more so, when other less guilty and far more sincere parties have had to pay a heavier price for less heinous crimes. How can such a man still have the power? How can such a man have any power? Isn't the BCCI familiar with the concept of responsibility? Isn't it the perfect time to make some noise? So let's.
Come on guys. You make the game. We come to watch you. How can you play right into their hands? Don't let them exploit you. Don't let fools run your lives. Don't let them squeeze every ounce of enthusiasm out of the game you love so much. Do everything you can to get the team you want. To be run by the people who love and understand your game. (Our game.) Don't let the businessmen milk it for all it's worth. Don't let them erode the fast-diminishing value of the India cap. Make an obvious statement the rest of the country can draw inspiration from. Be one of the millions logging on to www.cricketx.com in support of the public interest litigation against the BCCI. (If you haven't, you should.) File a PIL against some of the players. Do-blah, blah-oh, I forgot. This is India. Where anything goes. And public memory is very short. (It must be.) Which probably explains the pantomime the sport has been reduced to. The continuous 'buck passing' that takes place in all walks of life. And the presence of the CBI all walks of life.
"Doctor saab, mujhe chakkar aa raha hai!" "Ghabraiyae nahin, meine CBI ko phone kar diya hain. Sab kuch theek ho jaayegaa!" Raves and rants welcome at email@example.com
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