Former commissioner of the Indian Premier League, Lalit Modi, has been found guilty by a BCCI committee on eight charges of ‘indiscipline and misconduct’ relating to financial and administrative matters of the IPL, including sale of franchise and media rights. He was even pulled up for matters relating to internet rights given away as well as his Twitter comments related to the Kochi franchise. The charges are the latest in the growing list of allegations against Modi. Once the poster boy of the IPL, he now faces a life ban from the BCCI. As the war between BCCI and Modi gets graver, we trace the rise and fall of Lalit Modi.
Even though BCCI now prefers to keep a safe a face distance from Modi, there was a time not long ago when the latter’s name was synonymous with the IPL, BCCI’s larger than life enterprise. It was Modi who instrumental in making the IPL a mega success in the inaugural season in 2008. As the first commissioner of the IPL, he saw it to that the event was promoted massively, and made a big name for himself as a brilliant administrator. In fact, such was the success of the 2008 event that he was being compared to other renowned sports administrators around the world.
2009 saw a much bigger challenge in place for Modi. Owing to the general elections in the country, the IPL had to be moved out of India. South Africa agreed to host the event that year, and though there was only a short span of time for Modi to move the IPL circus to the South Africa nation, he managed to achieve the same with extraordinary success. Within two years, the IPL had grown to be the biggest and most extravagant sporting league in India. Modi was now on top of the world.
Modi’s fall however was as swift as his rise. It all began will allegations of bid rigging and numerous issues regarding the stakeholders of the now defunct Kochi franchise. Modi oversaw the bidding process in 2010, which is why he was answerable to all the allegations. His increased his own troubles by making a Twitter entry, wherein he mentioned the names of stakeholders of the Kochi franchise. This was seen to be in breach of the confidentiality agreements relating to the IPL. It was only the beginning of the troubles for Modi.
Immediately after the conclusion of IPL 3, Modi was suspended as the chairman and the commissioner of the IPL. The signs were clear. He was no longer wanted by the BCCI. Modi faced more financial woes when former cricketer Chris Cairns dragged him to court after the former alleged that he was involved in match-fixing back in 2008. Cairns won the case, and Modi had to pay up after that. The likely ban by BCCI would mean the end for Modi as a cricket administrator. From being one of the most powerful sports administrators to an unwanted entity in the running of Indian cricket, it has been one mighty fall for Lalit Modi.
--By A Cricket Analyst