The Bombay High Court on Friday rapped the Maharashtra government and BCCI for their failure to file replies to a PIL alleging that the cricket board had not paid money to police which provided security during IPL matches.
A division bench headed by Justice AM Khanwilkar also questioned the BCCI as to why it had defaulted on payment to the state for security services it had received during IPL season 4.
The court observed that the state's treasury was suffering in the blame game of BCCI and IPL.
The bench was hearing a PIL filed by one Santosh Pachlag regarding non-payment of over Rs 5 crore to police for security provided for IPL matches played in Navi Mumbai's DY Patil stadium in the previous seasons.
The bench pulled up BCCI saying, "The cricket board has disputed its liability to pay the amount as demanded. We fail to understand why the issue has remained unresolved for such a long time."
"If the board had sent requisition to provide adequate security, it would be primarily responsible to pay the amount as demanded, to the extent regulations and norms set up by the state authorities."
The court further observed that the state exchequer should not be made to suffer on account of disputes between the stakeholders inter se and particularly when best security arrangements were provided during the event, on request made by the board.
On BCCI's plea, the court gave it an opportunity to make representation to the state authorities on or before March 4, which, in turn, shall take appropriate decision on it, in accordance with the law. Next hearing has been fixed for March 13.
The petition said, "Six matches were played at the DY Patil stadium between March 12 and April 25 during the 2010 IPL. In all, 3,345 policemen were deployed at the stadium.
"Navi Mumbai police, on November 8, 2010, sent a bill of Rs 5,65,26,238 to BCCI. However the cricket body paid only Rs 47,53,000, stating that it had paid the Nagpur police only this much and hence would not pay more," the petition claimed.