AsiaOne Magazine

Shashank Manohar Quits as ICC Chairman 

The independent Chairman of the International Cricket Council (ICC), Shashank Manohar, had recently resigned after eight months in office. As per AsiaOne News, though Manohar had stated that he had quit for “personal reasons”, his decision appeared to be based on the expected opposition from the BCCI on his proposed policy reforms on the finance and governance models and revenue-sharing pattern of the ICC.

The speculation that his resignation was a result of the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI’s) opposition to his reforms was rooted in the fact that he had resigned after his meeting with Vinod Rai and Vikram Limaye – both members of the SC-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA). BCCI CEO Rahul Johri was also part of the meeting. As per AsiaOne News, it had become clear to Manohar that BCCI would not agree with his proposed reforms and would continue to oppose them during voting.

Manohar was appointed first as BCCI President after the infamous revolt against the former BCCI President & ICC Chairman N Srinivasan, and he focused on bringing several policy changes during his short tenure. Then, he became the Chairman of the ICC in November 2015, dethroning Srinivasan. Finally, he quit both the BCCI and the ICC in May 2016, and became the first independent Chairman of the ICC just eight months back. 

Vinod Rai, the head of the CoA (Committee of Administrators) was appointed by the Supreme Court of India – country’s highest court – in February 2017 to ensure implementation of the Lodha Committee’s recommendations. According to the analysis of Asia’s leading magazine, AsiaOne, under Asia News, the Committee of Administrators wanted to avoid any confrontation with the ICC, but was adamant that rights of BCCI at ICC would be protected.

Manohar had however shared with AsiaOne Magazine India that, "I have tried to do my best and have tried to be fair and impartial in deciding matters in the functioning of the Board and in matters related to Member Boards along with the able support of all Directors. However, for personal reasons it is not possible for me to hold the august office of ICC Chairman and hence I am tendering my resignation as Chairman with immediate effect. I take this opportunity to thank all the Directors, the Management and staff of ICC for supporting me wholeheartedly. I wish ICC all the very best and hope it achieves greater heights in future." 

He had further added that “It (my decision to resign) has nothing to do with the ICC functioning or these issues which are going to come up. Personal reason means genuinely personal. And I don’t lie.”

BCCI had also tried to win other cricket boards to its side by holding another separate meeting with the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB), and Zimbabwe Cricket Board in Colombo. All boards had decided to oppose ICC’s proposed reforms, as confirmed in a statement by BCB.

BCCI had simply shared, “BCCI expresses its surprise at the sudden decision of Mr. Manohar to step down. (His) contribution to Indian cricket is invaluable. He is a man of few words but excellent deeds.”

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Acquisition of Essar Oil by Rosneft 

In the Indian oil industry, very recently one of the largest foreign acquisitions is made by Rosneft, a consolidated oil firm that is majorly owned by government of Russia. It is expected to close the acquisition of Essar Oil by the first quarter of 2017. Essar Oil is an Indian company involved in the research and production of oil and natural gas, refining of crude oil, and marketing of petroleum products. It is a part of Mumbai-based Essar Group and controls an extensive refinery in Vadinar, Gujarat. 

Essar Group had announced on 15th October, 2016 that it will be selling 98% interests of Essar Oil unit to Rosneft, making way for this consortium to enter the most rapidly growing fuel market. According to this all-cash deal between Essar Oil and Rosneft, Essar Oil will be paid $10.9 billion for its refining and retail holdings by Rosneft and its collaborators Trafigura and United Capital Partners (UCP). 

Besides, an amount of $2 billion will be paid against the procurement of Vadinar port in the western State of Gujarat, along with specific import and export provisions. The deal will provide Rosneft a share of 49% in the Essar Oil and the rest of 49% shall be divided among Trafigura and UCP equally. As per the analysis of AsiaOne magazine, Indian refiners could have explored this opportunity as well.   

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