LHC suspends PCB’s new constitution

Since the new constitution of the PCB has been proposed with an intention to make it more effective, therefore, there are some chances that the LHC may pass an order to review it and omit anything introduced seems to be person-oriented. Analysts believe the court is likely to direct the PCB to review its constitution to make it democratic and in line with the broader constitutional lines.


News Analysis |

In a latest development, the Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday suspended all amendments introduced in the constitution of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) through a notification issued by the ministry of inter-provincial coordination. The move ‘surprised’ the legal counsel for the PCB who happened to be unaware of the ongoing petitions before the LHC.

It is worth recalling that Prime Minister Imran Khan appointed Ehsan Mani as Chairman of the PCB with an intention to reform the national board and make it more effective. He has stated more than once how he will reinvent Pakistan’s cricket, which has seen a serious decline due to politicization of the PCB.

According to details, Justice Shahid Mubeen also suspended five separate notifications of the PCB about the termination of services of several regional coaches.

The entire fraternity of elected representatives from the districts had not been included in the PCB general body and only a handful of people, including many unelected, would form the body.

Advocate Naghman Zaidi, who was representing the petitioners, argued that the ministry issued the impugned notification on Aug 19 about the new amendments, which changed the basic structure of the constitution in an undemocratic and unlawful manner.

He said the amendments had been made and the new constitution promulgated without taking on board the stakeholders, as well as without holding any meeting of the general body and governing body of the PCB.

The Counsel pointed out that the new constitution completely neglects democratic norms as seven out of the eleven members of the board of governors were either nominated or selected. He further mentioned how the new constitution empowered the board to remove the PCB chairman with three-fourths majority instead of a simple majority, as was the practice under the old constitution.

He further submitted that the impugned law replaced district cricket associations by city cricket associations. The entire fraternity of elected representatives from the districts had not been included in the PCB general body and only a handful of people, including many un-elected, would form the body. Therefore, he said, the new constitution was unrepresentative in letter and spirit.

Read more: PCB removes all coaching staff in massive revamp

The counsel argued that the constitution had deprived thousands of cricketers from their fundamental right to play cricket at domestic level and get a chance to represent the country on international fronts. He requested the court to set aside all the impugned orders and the notification of the amendments to the constitution for being issued without lawful authority.

Justice Mubeen passed a stay order and fixed the matter for further hearing along with the already pending main petitions on Aug 27. “In the meantime, operation of the impugned orders shall remain suspended till the next date of hearing,” said the order.

However, PCB’s legal adviser Taffazul Haider Rizvi told reporters that he had no knowledge or information with regard to any petition which had been filed against the new constitution of the board.

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He said the writ petition being referred to in the media was pending before the LHC with regard to the old constitution of the PCB and had been fixed for hearing on Aug 27 along with all other petitions.