On Wednesday morning, former India captain Sourav Ganguly was officially appointed as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President. Ganguly will be at the helm of Indian cricket's affairs till September 2020 and will serve as the 39th BCCI President in history. On this occasion, let us take a look at three former BCCI presidents who made Indian cricket the powerhouse it is today.
The late Raj Singh Dungarpur served as BCCI President from 1996 to 1999. Dungarpur had represented Rajasthan in his early cricketing career. Batting legend Sachin Tendulkar has credited Dungarpur for letting him play for the prestigious Cricket Club of India (CCI) in Mumbai as a 14-year-old despite the club's rules not permitting the same at the time. He also served as the selector of the Indian team in 1989-90, having played a massive role in selecting Tendulkar to represent the country at a tender age of 16. Dungarpur was also said to be responsible for suggesting Mohammad Azharuddin's name as captain of the Indian team in 1990. Azharuddin went on to lead the side in Tests and ODIs for the majority of the 90s.
The late Jagmohan Dalmiya served as the BCCI President for two stints. His first tenure from 2001 to 2004 and the second one was in 2015. Ironically, Dalmiya passed away while he was in office. The Bengal giant also served as the ICC President from 1997 to 2000. He was responsible to bring the World Cup to the Indian subcontinent in 1987 and 1996 and generating the maximum revenues from it. It was his visionary ideas that have made BCCI the richest and arguably, one of the most influential sports organisations in the world. Some of them include introducing Bangladesh as a Test-playing nation in 2000, allowing more endorsements for Indian cricketers as well as appointing the current President Sourav Ganguly as Indian captain in the early 2000s.
Pawar served as the BCCI President from 2005 to 2008, succeeding Dalmiya at the helm after a fierce battle. On assuming office, Pawar helped the BCCI embrace women's cricket by the end of 2006, bringing the board on par with other major cricketing boards, who were taking women's cricket seriously. It was also during Pawar's stint that the cash-rich T20 tournament, the Indian Premier League (IPL) came into fruition. The IPL is the biggest cricketing event in the world and is heavily responsible for India's steady inflow of finances.