National Cricket Academy’s Head Physio under Charges of Conflict

Head physiotherapist of the board at National Cricket Academy is in question for conflict of interest and could lead to more revelation on his position with another private healthcare company.

Supreme Court appointed committee has raised issue of conflict of interest in Indian cricket time and again in its 33-month tenure and even scanned ex-India players in the range of its radar. But apparently, they missed a blatant case right under their noses.

The new set of office-bearers in BCCI were sifting through all the documents and internal communications involving Indian cricket administration these last 33 months, they happened to get their hands on an email that puts the head physiotherapist of the board’s National Cricket Academy, Ashish Kaushik, in a spot.

An email dated December 19, 2017, and addressed to the CoA and BCCI CEO, Rahul Johri, has emerged where Kaushik, in reply to clarification sought over his position as a shareholder in YOS Healthcare Pvt. Ltd., a company specializing in sports, health and fitness –  ‘outrightly denies any allegations of conflict of interest with respect to his current position at the NCA and his engagement with YOS sports health clinic.’

In an earlier email addressed to late Dr. M. V. Sridhar – then General Manager (Operations) – on July 20, 2017, Kaushik writes that he has put in papers at YOS as director and proposes October 1, 2017, as the joining date at the NCA in Bangalore. Kaushik was brought onboard that very month at NCA for an annual compensation of INR 1.5cr and INR 60, 000 per month as accommodation allowance.

In contradiction with what Kaushik claimed, the healthcare company’s own internal audit dated August 31, 2018 – by CAs Annarao & Shrikant – list Kaushik as a 55% shareholder in the company alongside two other individuals – Srikanth Narayanswamy (40%) and Rahul Patwardhan (5%).

According to the sources, “Kaushik has stated earlier that he is drawing no benefits from YOS but at 55% of shares in his name, the company is literally owned by him, no matter if he is not one of the directors. how was he allowed to continue? Sunil Gavaskar had requested CoA to allow him to change the shareholding patterns at the professional management group (PMG) but he was not allowed. So, if someone of the stature of Gavaskar was not allowed then how were these people allowed to operate do freely?”

It has been observed that a good deal of Indian cricketers were referred to YOS for health check-ups. Who took the call to refer them to YOS? If it was decided by Kaushik then the situation is scarier than it seems. This matter, hence, is not limited to conflict of interest arising from hiding his association with his own company. There was indeed more to it and should be found out.

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