Hardik, Rahul directed to contribute INR 20 lakh each to charity

3:11 AM ET

Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul have been directed to contribute INR 20 lakh (USD 30,000 approx.) each to charity by BCCI ombudsman Justice DK Jain “in order to purge” their “collective indiscretion” on a talk show where they made controversial and offensive comments. The two have already missed five ODIs each as part of a provisional ban pending inquiry. Both are part of India’s 15-member squad for the World Cup to be played in June and July in the UK.

The controversy began when their interview on the show Koffee With Karan was aired in the first week of January. The two made remarks that led Vinod Rai, the head of the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA), which is running the BCCI right now, take immediate action. However, in the absence of an ombudsman or an ethics officer in the BCCI, an inquiry couldn’t take place and it was decided that the players can’t be suspended indefinitely.

Having missed ODIs in Australia and New Zealand, the duo made their comebacks. Their case was handed over to Justice Jain as soon as he assumed the charge of the BCCI ombudsman. He sent a notice to the two players on April 2 and both appeared before Justice Jain in person on April 9 and 10, and repeated the apology they had made in public. The BCCI CEO Rahul Johri also appeared before Jain, and present the CoA’s view that missing out on five matches and the match fee for those matches was sufficient penalty in their view.

Jain didn’t disagree with it, but added a further direction. “Taking into consideration all these aspects,” his order read, “in particular that the player has tendered an apology for the incident without seeking to justify his action, has acknowledged his duty to the society and expressed his willingness to hold himself to higher standards expected of him and has missed out five ODIs; in the interest of justice and fair play, in order to purge his collective indiscretion, it would suffice if the player is directed to…”

The order goes on to direct that the players pay INR 1 lakh each to “most-deserving” widows on 10 constables each of para-military forces and deposit Rs 10 lakh each to a fund created for promotion of cricket among the blind.

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