PCB chief Ashraf's suspension upheld by Islamabad High Court

Islamabad, June 14 (ANI): The Islamabad High Court has upheld the suspension of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Mohammad Zaka Ashraf until an interim PCB chairman is named to represent the board in the International Cricket Council's (ICC) annual conference in London later this month.

Ashraf might step down or could be told by President Asif Ali Zardari to resign in the next few days following the dismal show of the team in the ongoing ICC Champions Trophy, the Daily Times reports.

According to the report, the court had last month suspended Ashraf from 'exercising his power within his incumbency' due to what it called the 'dubious' and 'polluted' process to elect him, in response to a petition filed against the PCB elections that were held in May, through which Ashraf was re-elected to a four-year term as chairman.

However, the report said that despite the court's order, there is no procedure defined in PCB's constitution to appoint a chairman through the inter-provincial coordination committee, as being an autonomous body, the PCB is not regulated by the government and is directly linked with the president of Pakistan, who is the chief patron of the board.

But, according to a source, Ashraf himself had been contemplating stepping down after getting clear signals that the new government did not support him, adding that there are many legal ways through which the court could ask for the constitution to be reviewed again by the law ministry or order that the process to elect the chairman be reviewed.

Although the new constitution of PCB discourages direct government interference in cricket affairs, the source, however, said that many of the petitioners have taken the stance that the entire process to have the chairman elected is not constitutional and should be held again as the regional cricket associations were kept out of the process.

Ashraf was initially appointed chairman directly by Zardari in October 2011 under the old constitution, the report added. (ANI)

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