NEW DELHI: The BCCI brass will soon have a meeting to chalk out a plan to deal with mounting pressure from the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) that wants Virat Kohli and Co under its ambit.
There is a Committee of Administrators (CoA) meeting in Mumbai on November 3, where the issue will come up for discussion but, as of now, the Indian cricket’s governing body is unlikely to budge from its current stand.
The top leadership of BCCI believes that trying to get a Virat Kohli or Mahendra Singh Dhoni sign the ‘whereabouts clause’ is one of the main reasons behind NADA wanting BCCI to come under its wing.
Whereabouts are information provided by a limited number of top elite athletes about their location to the International Sport Federation (IF) or National Anti-Doping Organization (NADA in this case), which include them in their respective registered testing pool as part of these top elite athletes’ anti-doping responsibilities.
The BCCI had hired Sweden’s International Drug Testing Management (IDTM) for testing work and is likely to continue with it.
With reports emerging that NADA is likely to send its Doping Control Officers (DCO) during the domestic tournaments and if BCCI doesn’t co-operate, will take legal route, but senior board officials are wondering whether that would be as easy as top government officials are making it out to be.
The top Indian cricketers, who are always in the spotlight, have time and again protested that signing the whereabouts clause would lead to infringement of privacy.
“BCCI is not a signatory to NADA code and therefore under no compulsion to release our cricketers for the dope test. We are under ICC, which is WADA compliant. At ICC events, our cricketers are tested by WADA. But since we are not a National Sports Federation (NSF), we are under no obligation to become NADA signatory,” a senior BCCI official, privy to the development said.
The official then said: “Testimony to our transparent process is the latest WADA report where 153 of our cricketers were tested ‘In Competition’ and ‘Out of Competition’ and there was only one dope positive result.”
Asked about the legal threat, the BCCI official sarcastically said: “BCCI, in any case, is fighting so many legal battles! But seriously, NADA officials think that they will just land up at IPL or Ranji Trophy and force a BCCI registered cricketer to undergo dope test. We didn’t know it was this simple.”