"Tell me any other captainforget about captain, tell me any other player who would have got eight years and wouldn't have won the title and would have still continued with it.
"So it has to be accountability," Gambhir, who led KKR to two IPL titles in 2012 and 2014, said on the show 'Time Out'.
Gambhir has been a staunch critic of Kohli's IPL leadership over the years but he insisted that there is nothing personal.
"...but somewhere down the line, he needs to put his hand up and say, 'yes, I am responsible. I am accountable'."
Gambhir then cited the example of Kings XI Punjab, who didn't show patience with Ravichandran Ashwin after the veteran off-spinner failed to deliver as captain for just two seasons.
"Eight years is a long, long time. Look at what happened to R Ashwin. Two years of captaincy (for the Kings XI Punjab), he couldn't deliver and he was removed."
For someone like Rohit, who is on the cusp of his fifth title, a long stint as Mumbai Indians captain has been only possible because he has delivered, said Gambhir.
"We talk about MS Dhoni, we talk about Rohit Sharma, we talk about Virat Kohli...not at all. Dhoni has won three (IPL) titles, Rohit Sharma has won four titles, and that's the reason they've captained for such a long time because they've delivered.
"I'm sure if Rohit Sharma wouldn't have delivered for eight years, he would have been removed as well. There should not be different yardsticks for different people."
Gambhir said it irksome to see Kohli's reluctance to accept that the buck stops at him.
"You're the leader, you're the captain. When you get the credit, you should take the criticism as well."
He even went to the extent of saying that RCB did not deserve to qualify for the play-offs after four successive losses.
"You can keep saying 'we qualified for the playoffs and we deserved to qualify for the playoffs', absolutely not. RCB actually never deserved to qualify for the playoffs."
Gambhir said RCB has increasingly become a side about only two people -- Kohli and AB de Villiers.
"And then they should have had a squad, probably if Virat wanted to open, they should have picked a middle-order batter in the auction. But again it was all about Virat and AB (de Villiers)."
It was only de Villiers who came up some match-winning performances to prevent RCB's season from becoming a total disaster.
"Imagine if AB would have had a bad season, tell me what would have happened to RCB," Gambhir said.
"He was the one who actually won them two or three games out of seven. I don't think as a unit they've done anything different from what they did last year. It's exactly the same this year as well.
"Only because you've qualified for the playoffs, just because of one individual's absolute brilliance, it doesn't make you a strong contender to win the IPL.
(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.
As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.
Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.