Thursday April 18, 2024

IHC reserves verdict on maintainability of plea against Naqvi’s appointment as PCB chief

Caretaker prime minister cannot serve as PCB patron-in-chief, appoint board's chairman, petitioner argues

By Awais Yousafzai
March 05, 2024
CM Mohsin Naqvi during a meeting in this picture on November 12, 2023. — X/@GovtofPunjabPK
CM Mohsin Naqvi during a meeting in this picture on November 12, 2023. — X/@GovtofPunjabPK

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has reserved its verdict on the maintainability of a plea against Mohsin Naqvi's appointment as Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman.

The petition, heard by IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq, was filed in the court contending that although it is the prerogative of the prime minister to appoint the PCB chief, there lies a distinction between the authority of an elected prime minister and a caretaker.

During the hearing today, the petitioner's counsel argued that only the cricketing body's adding that a caretaker prime minister "cannot be the PCB's patron-in-chief" who has the authority to appoint the PCB head.

Last month, Naqvi — a media channel owner — who was serving as Punjab's interim chief minister was elected unopposed as the PCB chairman for three years after being nominated by Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar for the cricketing body's Board of Governors.

"I will try to fix the issues affecting Pakistan cricket. Reforms in cricket are the need of the hour," he said while commenting on his appointment as the PCB chief.

He is currently serving as the 37th chairman of the cricket board after his predecessor Zaka Ashraf stepped down as chairman management committee in January.

"I was working for the betterment of cricket but it is not possible for us to work in this way," Ashraf said.

During the tenure of Ashraf, Pakistan played two major competitions — Asia Cup and the ODI World Cup.

The Men in Green failed to qualify in the final of the continental tournament while they also couldn't qualify for the semi-finals of the World Cup.

Naqvi was appointed to the sought-after post after the board was hit by a series of resignations following the team's dismal performances in major tournaments.

The officials who had stepped down from their posts included Mickey Arthur, Grant Bradburn and Andrew Puttick.

Prior to that, Pakistan's star batter Babar Azam had also resigned as the national team's captain from all three formats.