Former Ranji player Mahesh Desai, who lost the Goa Cricket Association (GCA) election to Vipul Phadke by two votes, has in a letter to BCCI Obdusman and Ethics Officer Justice Retd Rajiv Mehrotra alleged the election was won by the former secretary “by illegal, unlawful and criminal misappropriation of funds of the association and in violation of the code of election of BCCI, applicable to GCA."
“Having known Vipul through his father, I was shocked when I came to know that he had misused his powers as general secretary. I never expected this from him. I was under the impression that we were having a clean and fair fight,” stated Mahesh Desai in a press conference during which hard copies of evidence were distributed to the media.
“We took time to write to the ombudsman and to even contact you all as we were collecting the evidence. Now we have the proof,” said Khetan Bhatikar, who also added that he attended the press conference as a friend of Mahesh Desai and not as the Medical Director of GCA.
“What has been done is very bad. I am present here for all to know that such mistakes cannot be repeated. Such methods of winning elections will kill the sport and should not be tolerated and never be allowed,” added Khetan.
The GCA elections were declared on October 6, 2022, and held on October 27, 2022. “That having the said knowledge, Vipul Phadke, secretary of GCA, decided to allot funds and various other benefits to some member clubs, which are members of GCA with voting rights, just on the eve of elections, when the election procedure had already commenced between 6/10/20222 and 27/10/2022," claimed Mahesh in his letter.
“We have emailed our complaint to the BCCI Ombudsman and have been informed that there is going to be a hearing tomorrow. Both parties will be heard and a verdict is expected by early January 2023. We will approach the High Court,” claimed Khetan when asked what would be the steps if the ombudsman did not give merit to their complaint.
“We have demanded that Vipul’s election be declared null and void and that Mahesh be declared as President," stated Khetan. “Apart from writing a letter to the ombudsman, we have written a letter to GCA. The secretary of GCA Rohan Desai has already written a letter to the ombudsman highlighting the irregularities that were raised during the Executive Committee meeting,” added Khetan.
The press conference was attended by former Ranji star Sharad Pednekar, Vikas Parsekar, Suresh Amonkar, Arolkar and other representatives of clubs affiliated to GCA.