Indian Sports Ministry Seeks to Bring Cricket Under RTI

12 July 2013

The Indian Sports Ministry has launched a new effort to bring the Indian cricket board (BCCI) under the Right to Information Act.

The ministry’s new draft National Sports Bill says only those federations coming under RTI can represent India in international competitions. A panel headed by retired judge Mukul Mudgal drafted the bill.

The BCCI, which does not receive government grants, thus far has resisted efforts to bring it under RTI.

Recounting the legal history, an article in The Hindustan Times said:

Although in the past the Supreme Court has held that the BCCI was not a state body under the meaning of Article 12 of the constitution, it subsequently held the Board to be a public body discharging public functions.

The Central Information Commission (CIC) verdict last month bringing political parties under the RTI ambit too has implications for the BCCI.
A “public authority” is obliged to appoint an information officer to dole out information to the public in accordance with provisions of the RTI Act.

The sports ministry had filed an affidavit before the CIC contending that the BCCI is a “public authority” and hence is covered under the RTI Act. 

The next step is for the draft to be discussed by the Cabinet. In 2011, the Cabinet rebuffed a similar effort. (See previous report.)

Also see report in IBN Live.

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