Case withdrawal first, Bista tells ICC delegates

Lalitpur, July 27

National Sports Council (NSC) Member Secretary Keshab Kumar Bista reiterated his stance of withdrawal of the court case by the elected committee of Cricket Association of Nepal to pave way for the safe landing of Nepali cricket.

Bista said the International Cricket Council delegates, who are here to assess the current scenario of Nepali cricket following the suspension of CAN membership in April, were convinced with the roadmap presented by him during the two-and-half-hour meeting at the International Sports Complex. “I found them happy when I briefed them about the way out of the current deadlock,” said Bista.

A three-member ICC team of Asia Development Manager Bandula Warnapura, Finance Manager Amar Sheikh and Legal Section Chief Paul McMohan are in Kathmandu to prepare a report regarding the current situation of the sport in Nepal. The ICC had suspended the membership of CAN on April 25 alleging the government of interfering into the cricketing matters and also accused the board of not holding free and fair elections. The ICC step came after National Sports Council formed an ad hoc committee under Ramesh Silwal on Janaury 8, refusing to give recognition to the elected committee led by Chatur Bahadur Chand. The ICC board meeting later approved the suspension and decided to send a team to assess the situation.

“We gave them all the details they sought regarding the controversy,” said Bista. “We also accepted our mistake that we did in the past and now we are ready to move ahead with positive attitude,” he said. The ICC team yesterday met with former presidents of CAN, Binay Raj Pandey and Tanka Aangbuhang, elected committee president Chand and his team members, coach Jagat Tamatta and skipper Paras Khadka. The ICC officials are also holding a joint meeting with presidents and general secretaries of both the committees along with NSC Member Secretary Bista on Thursday.

“I believe the joint meeting will discuss on the proposal forwarded by the NSC and hope that all the officials would agree on that,” said Bista. “If the court case is withdrawn, we are ready to make a new beginning including all the stakeholders of the sport,” added Bista. Chand-led body had on January 12 filed a writ petition at the Supreme Court, four days after the NSC formed the ad hoc committee led by Silwal with the mandate of holding fresh elections within three months. The apex court is yet to make the final call. The third AGM of CAN on December 14 last year had elected the 17-member executive committee under Chand.