Hyderabad: The political gamemanship taking place in the corridors and offices of power within HCA has taken on epic proportions, thereby shifting the focus from the game to the realms courtroom conflicts or street-level polemics.
Media headlines are grabbing greater attention than ever before as the HCA President Mohammed Azharuddin’s struggle for power with his rivals. There were high hopes for a new era in Hyderabad cricket when Azharuddin was elected President. It is instead political wrangling which has seen a virulent increase.
HCA is not immune to political upheavals. Similar stand-offs and incidents have occurred before. They have never been so prolonged. The more this goes on, the more damage it will do. Already, the tussle continues inexorably. If the situation continues, talented young cricketers may move to other cities in search of better opportunities.
Fans will also suffer. We all remember what happened to ticket hunters before the last international match, a few months back. The chaotic and confusing aftermath of the police lathi charges on the hapless fans showed utter inefficiency by the ruling HCA coterie.
Numerous allegations were made about black marketing tickets. Hyderabad was made to feel shameful by the whole episode. “Other cities have streamlined the ticket-buying process. “But in Hyderabad, we are going backwards,” said a fan who was injured.
His stubborn President is facing a revolt from his flock. A majority of HCA members decided to hold elections in January. This was done with the goal of electing new office bearers. Many of the respected and experienced members of the rival group have accused Azharuddin, a dictatorial leader, of conducting elections in January. This has brought attention to the sad state of affairs.
Shivlal Yadav, former secretary to the HCA and Arshad Ayub, and G. Vinod were among those who attended the recent special general body meeting. They told the media that Azharuddin couldn’t claim to be President of HCA anymore as his term was over. They unanimously decided that the elections for the new body would be held in January 2023.
In an order dated August 22, 2022, the Supreme Court established a four-member supervisory panel. The order specified that all decisions of the Apex council and general bodies must be presented to the committee for ratification.
Justice Nisar Ahmad Kakru, a member of the Supervisory Commission, has questioned the operation of the Committee. This matter has also been a source of controversy. Vested interests are exploiting the HCA’s endless problems. There are numerous allegations of corruption and bribery in the selection process of teams.
Justice Kakru submitted an indicting 21-page report that clearly highlighted all the problems with the HCA as well as the supervisory committee. Justice Kakru also ruled Azharuddin was no longer President of HCA, as his term expired on September 26, 2022.
It remains to be seen how the HCA scandal will play out over the next few months. Will the January 2023 elections go smoothly? The opposition group to Azharuddin is optimistic that the matter will be settled and that HCA’s good name will be restored. The HCA was once a shining example to other state agencies. Unfortunately, this is no longer the case. Hyderabad has been ridiculed across the country. Cricket fans are optimistic that there will be a brighter future for Hyderabad cricket in 2023. Let’s wait and see.