Two Day Ban For Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul For Using Vacuous Comments

Two Day Ban For Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul For Using Vacuous Comments

Two Day Ban For Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul For Using Vacuous Comments

New Delhi: The controversy surrounding Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul's comments on a popular TV show escalated on Thursday after Committee of Administrators (CoA) chief Vinod Rai recommended a two-ODI ban on both the players. CoA chief Vinod Rai, in an e-mail to BCCI CEO Rahul Johri, called the comments by Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul "very crass." He wrote, "I have seen the remarks made by these two players on the show in print today. Very crass. No apology can cover it. I had asked Diana (CoA member Diana Edulji) to suggest penalty because I had not seen the clip. I think we need to give both of them a two-match suspension. If Diana agrees, Rahul please draft an appropriate instruction and issue today as their explanations have come in. Separately, please prepare an advisory to all BCCI contracted players and support staff."

Responding to the matter, Diana Edulji said, "There is no delay as such. Big steps will be taken through a proper process and protocol as per BCCI's rules and regulations. This is my response to the story."

Pandya's comments on the ‘Koffee With Karan' show drew flak from all quarters and were termed as misogynistic and sexist after which he along with KL Rahul were issued a show cause notice. Pandya, in reply to the notice, regretted his behavior. But the response has not gone down well with CoA chief Vinod Rai.

"I am not convinced with Hardik's explanation and I have recommended a two-match ban for both players. However the final decision will be taken once Diana gives her go ahead," Rai told PTI.

Meanwhile, Edulji has referred the matter to the BCCI's legal cell.

On the show, Pandya boasted about hooking up with multiple women and also how open he has been about it with his parents.

Rahul, the more restrained of the two in the show hosted by film-maker Karan Johar, has not yet reacted to the social media storm.

The two players were given 24 hours to explain themselves by the BCCI.

"Diana has sought legal opinion whether the duo can be banned. So, obviously a decision will be taken once she gives her nod. As far as I am concerned, the comments were crass, in bad taste and unacceptable," Rai said.

It is learnt that Edulji has also sought the opinion of BCCI acting president CK Khanna, acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary and treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry on the issue.

Edulji also sought the opinion of BCCI acting president CK Khanna, acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary and treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry on the issue. Responding to her query, Anirudh recommended a suspension for the two and a gender sensitisation programme for them. He also took a dig at BCCI CEO Rahul Johri, who was cleared of sexual harassment charges but advised to undergo gender sensitisation by an inquiry committee.

"The players must be immediately suspended pending a proper inquiry and must be allowed to join the team (if selected) only once they have gone through a proper sensitisation in addition to serving a ban, if imposed upon them," he said. "In any case the entire team and support staff must go through a sensitisation process. The CEO may join them in the sensitisation as well as recommended by Ms. Veena Gowda, Advocate," he added.

Anirudh said there should also be an investigation into how the two players appeared on an entertainment show. "...the provisions of the earlier contracts and the practice in place would
have required these contracted players to seek permission to appear on the show. Was such a permission sought? Was such a permission granted? If so, by whom?" he asked in his response to Edulji.

"...I question the situation where the sports journalists are kept at bay while access to the players is given to entertainment shows," he said referring to the provision of players needing the Board''s approval for routine media interviews.
Anirudh said the loose talk on women could also make the two players susceptible to approaches by bookmakers through "honey-traps".

"...the comments such as the ones that have been made would definitely have painted a large, red target on the back of the players for potential recruiters for the organized syndicates who attempt to indulge in match–fixing across the globe," he said. "The very first caution that the ICC Anti-Corruption officers give in briefing to the players is to beware of situations of honey traps and the comments made on the show make it seem that the players may just be ripe for the plucking," he added.

(With PTI inputs)