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IPL team owners keenly await SC ruling on BCCI-Lodha panel tiff

Shah Rukh Khan
Kolkata: Actor Shah Rukh Khan and CAB president Sourav Ganguly during an IPL match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on May 4, 2016. (Photo: IANS)

The Indian Premier League (IPL) is just four and a half months away from seeing another season. However, the recent tiff between the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the Lodha Panel has kept the team owners in a tizzy. The Lodha Panel had suggested some reforms in the way the BCCI is currently functioning.

While some reforms were welcomed by the board, there were others that were opposed. Now, the Supreme Court is scheduled to give its ruling on the stand off between the BCCI and the Lodha Panel. The apex court of India will give its verdict on December 5. The Lodha panel that was appointed by the Supreme Court has delayed the regular functionalities of the IPL.

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The media rights process has been affected. If there is any further delay in the ruling, the entire IPL 2017 might be under big dark cloud. The team owners in such precarious situation are keenly awaiting the call from the court. The team owners have a meeting by October every year. However, with the BCCI and Lodha panel being in a tiff, this year there has been no meeting yet.

A team official recently quoted that they might run out of time if the SC judgment is delayed. “We may run out of time if the SC judgement is delayed. Nothing has moved from the time the SC ordered BCCI to implement the Lodha panel’s reforms. Generally, after three months of IPL, BCCI sends people to each of the teams to find out what is needed to be done in the following season. Then they take a feedback and discuss it in the GC and get back during the workshop. This process hasn’t happened at all this year,” a team official, who didn’t wish to be named, told the TOI.

They officials feel that the delay is nowhere in line with the spirit of the tournament and is only creating confusions. “This delay in IPL preparation is also giving wrong signals to teams and sponsors. This isn’t good for the game. Whatever the teams have learnt, it’s only through the media,” another team official quoted.

The BCCI officials have been firm in their remark. They quoted that not just the league but the other BCCI proceedings are also halted because of the Lodha panel.

“The board knows that what it is today is because of IPL. It’s a cash cow and, deliberately, no one would be sending wrong signals to the sponsors and the teams. A lot of the cricket activities are stalled because things are not moving at all at the administrative level due to the legal tangle. Even the Indian players’ contract papers aren’t signed because the board can’t enter into any commercial deal till the time the Lodha panel takes a call on the threshold value,” a BCCI official quoted.

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