Kapil Dev, one of India's biggest heroes, and the man who led India to her first World Cup win has returned to the BCCI's fold. Much like the story of the prodigal son in the Bible, this story also runs high with emotions as the two are finally united, setting aside their petty issues.
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"BCCI is like a parent and we are like its children. Even during my earlier association, I have contributed for welfare of cricket and cricketers and even now I aim to do so." - Kapil Dev
Kapil Dev who was at loggerheads with the Indian board for the past five years and never missed an opportunity to unleash his tongue against the board has finally reconciled with the very 'evil' he once fought. The two haven't been able to see eye to eye ever since Dev headed the rebel Indian Cricket League against BCCI. However with the ICL now defunct and long done and dusted with, Kapil Dev has finally resigned from the Essel Sports Private Limited that ran the ICL. In a letter to the BCCI he pledged his support to the BCCI and improving cricket in India.
The Indian board has accepted the olive branch from Dev and has decided to grant complete amnesty to the former Indian captain. Kapil Dev who never heard the word 'amnesty' before, had to look it up to find its meaning! The amnesty now makes him eligible for the one time benefit of Rs. Rs. 1.5 Crores ($ 270,000) and also a monthly gratis of Rs. 35,000. All the payments he missed in his five years of exile will also be reinstated so that translates as Rs. 21 Lakhs ($ 37,340), not including the interest it would have incurred during the time.
"I never understood whether the word amnesty is correct or not. May be I am not very intelligent but I checked the dictionary to find the meaning." - Kapil Dev
What brought the change of heart for the former Indian captain? We'll probably never know. But whatever it was, it is good to see one of the true heroes of Indian cricket who has striven continuously to improve sports in the country hand in hand with the country's biggest sports body. Together they can do much, and hopefully they do much. Its time the board starts treating some of its former cricketers with the respect they deserve and this is definitely a positive move. Its a good show by the BCCI to accept Kapil Dev back, and hopefully it was done with all the right intentions rather than it being just a good PR move.
So what next for BCCI and Kapil Dev? Only time will tell, but you can be sure that this putting aside of selfish and petty arguments by these two big parties is a step in the right direction.