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10 facts that prove Jagmohan Dalmiya was a kickass administrator

Jaggu Dada, as he was affectionately called, is credited with changing the fortunes of Indian Cricket, he is the one who changed once cash strapped Indian cricket board into a million dollar industry.In 1996, the
India TV Sports Desk September 21, 2015 12:26 IST
India TV Sports Desk

Jaggu Dada, as he was affectionately called, is credited with changing the fortunes of Indian Cricket, he is the one who changed once cash strapped Indian cricket board into a million dollar industry.

In 1996, the BBC declared him to be one of the world's top six sports executives, BCCI is today one of the richest sporting bodies in world sports with a licence to rule world cricket, alla thanks to his exceptional as an . He was

Cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle aptly described him as "a reflection of the Indian mood”. Dalmiya's Marwari acumen always sensed the nerve of the country and how his decisions would affect millions of cricket fans in the country.

10 reasons that prove he was the best administrator BCCI has ever seen

1) Sachin ball tampering episode

The kind of power Dalmiya wielded can be gauged by the fact the he forced the erstwhile South African board president Ali Bacher to withdraw Mike Denness from match referee's position after he alleged that India's Sachin Tendulkar had tampered with the ball during the Port Elizabeth Test match in 2001.

2) Harbhajan Singh- Steve Bucknor episode

During 2008 Border-Gavaskar Trophy Test series, India claimed to be a victim of poor umpiring decisions by Steve Bucknor and racial slurs from Australian side. Harbhajan Singh was suspended for calling Andrew Symonds a monkey. India threatened to pull out of the tour what happened next stamped the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)'s authority over world cricket. Steve Bucknor was removed from the next game while Singh was cleared to play.

Also Read : Also Read: Jagmohan Dalmiya: Making Indian cricket a commercial entity

3) When Dalmiya dared government to take over BCCI 

In 1997, Sports minister  Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa called BCCI's office bearers to meet him.  At the meeting, NN Khanna, then sports secretary hurled abuses at BCCI officials and alleged that it had not done anything for the country and sports. He said the government had thought of taking over cricket's governing body. Dalmiya shut him off saying “Hum koi ghaas nahi katate hai (We are not a useless bunch of people here)! We have been running the Board for over 50 years. I am confident you can¬not touch us.”  He only started talking agin when the ill mannered official was made to leave the room.

On the threat of BCCI acquisition Dalmiya thundered,” if you mean that because we are rich, we are obliged to pay even Rs 1 lakh to the government or to the minis¬try, sorry, we shall not pay a single rupee! You may proceed with your plans of acquisition of BCCI.”

4) Dalmiya- The money spinner

Dalmiya kick-started the inflow of big money into BCCI's coffers including entering into a five-year contract with Pepsi and Trans World International (TWI) in 1993 which is still seen as his biggest gift to Indian cricket. While the television rights of the tournament was sold to the US-based WorldTel for $10 million, Wills then a cigarette brand owned by ITC Ltd, bought the sponsorship rights for $12 million.


5) Ending Doordarshan's monopoly

Back then, state broadcaster Doordarshan held a monopoly over telecast rights and the BCCI had to pay to the state run television channel for broadcasting games. Dalmiya, along with I S Bindra, decided to end state broadcaster Doordarshan's monopoly by selling telecasting rights of the 1993-94 India vs England series to Transworld International for $600,000 per game.

6) When Dalmiya made country's most powerful politician bite the dust 

In one of the most political BCCI fight, Dalmiya gave a casting vote in favour of his candidate Ranbir Singh Mahendra to defeat union minister and NCP heavyweight Sharad Pawar by a solitary vote.

7) ICC president

Consider this - when he took over as ICC president in 1997, the body had all of 16,000 pounds in its accounts. By the time he demitted office, he had turned the organisation into a profit-making body.

Also Read: Jagmohan Dalmiya to be accorded state funeral today

8) Shifting the balance of power

His stint as the first Asian head of the ICC marked a shift in the game's balance of power from the old superpowers, England and Australia, towards Asia, particularly India.

9)  Ensuring equal compensation for India:

Dalmiya and IS Bindra once argued with ICC that it was unfair that whenever a foreign team visited India, we paid them $1,00,000 per ODI and $5,00,000 per Test match, but when India went abroad, they did not pay us an equal amount. ICC agreed and from then on everyone had to pay an equal amount.

10) Hosting world cup in Indian sub continent: 

A shrewd tactician and someone who was at forefront of the BCCI numbers game, Dalmiya was the brain behind India co-hosting the Reliance World Cup in 1987 and then the Wills World Cup in 1996.


With excerpts from “I was There – Memiors of a Cricket Administrator” by JY Lele and PTI