The l’affaire Deccan Chargers got into a legal mess on Friday with claims and counter-claims over the real position. The Hyderabad -based Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise claimed to have found a buyer for the cash-strapped team, but it was not clear if the team existed in the first place.
Having failed to honour its commitment of submitting the required bank guarantee of Rs100 crore to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) by Friday, the Chargers have put a legal stamp on the BCCI’s September 14 termination of the team, but late on Friday night, a DC official claimed that they have obtained a stay from the arbitrator and status quo has been ordered till October 17. BCCI officials, however, seemed enthused by the day’s developments.
“It was their submission before the court that they would pay Rs100 crore as bank guarantee and clear the players’ salaries. They have failed to do so even after seeking an extension,” said a top BCCI official. Asked what the BCCI’s next step would be, the official said it would be made known to the media soon.
The BCCI’s stated position has been to go for the ninth team as an eight-team league would drastically reduce its income and cut the franchisees’ share. The BCCI might auction a new team, but the final verdict will be known in a few days.
On Friday morning, Chargers claimed to have sold the team to real estate firm Kamla Landmarc Real Estate Holdings Pvt Limited for Rs1100 crore.
However, there were always doubts about the existence of the team, particularly after their failure to submit the Rs100 crore bank guarantee promised to the court.
In the Bombay high court, the Deccan Chronicle Holdings Limited sought further extension up to October 15 to submit the guarantee.
But the court refused to grant further time. Justice SJ Kathawala said the earlier deadline of October 9 had been extended by three days to accommodate them.
The court had on September 26 appointed retired Supreme Court judge CK Thakkar as an arbitrator to resolve the case within three months. The judge had, however, clarified that the September 26 order would immediately cease to be in force if DCHL fails to furnish the bank guarantee.