Published On : Thu, Apr 7th, 2016

No Stay on First IPL match in Maharashtra

Nearly 60 lakh litres of water will be used for 20 IPL matches scheduled to be played in Maharashtra.

Mumbai/Nagpur: First Match Of IPL To Be Held In Mumbai On Saturday, said Bombay High Court and have asked the Government to reply by April 12 and based on same other IPL matches faith will be decided.

The Bombay High Court had sharp words for the Board of Control for Cricket in India or BCCI today as it resumed hearing a petition against holding Indian Premier League matches in the state, which is reeling under drought.

“It is a question of priority – a game or people… Are you going to maintain gardens and stadiums when people are dying? Is this what you are saying?” the court asked when the cricket body argued against shifting the tournament out of the state.

The BCCI drew the court’s wrath when it said, “Water is required throughout the year. On match day it is not needed. So why are you against IPL? If you have to be logical then stop watering of gardens and for everything else.” It also said that it had allowed a stadium in Latur “die a natural death”.

IPL, the world’s richest cricket tournament is set to begin tomorrow with a glitzy opening ceremony in Mumbai. Cricket will begin on Saturday and 20 matches have been scheduled in three Maharashtra cities – Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur.

The petition says that the parched state cannot afford the lakhs of litres of water needed to prepare pitches for the IPL.

“This is a commercial event for minting money… Mumbai will run dry in a few months. In Pune people are importing water. In Nagpur people don’t have water for sanitation,” the petitioners argued in court today.

The BCCI has pleaded that it was too late to change the tournament’s schedule. “Now it’s just three days away. Why this last minute? People have bought tickets. Players are coming in,” it said.

The petitioners say about 60 lakh litres of water will be needed for the 20 matches scheduled to be played in the state. But Maharashtra Cricket Association or MCA told the court on Wednesday that 40 lakh litres would be needed only for the matches in Mumbai.

The court had severely reprimanded the MCA yesterday saying, “How can you waste water like this? Are people more important or IPL? How can you be so careless?”

“This is criminal wastage. You know the situation in Maharashtra,” the court had said.