The Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) and Sahara feud may have gone to the court only a couple of days back, but the conflict is as old as nine months, revealed a source.
According to him, the relation between the two parties went sour during the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2012, when the stadium in Gahunje hosted its first big tournament.
“Soon after the first match, Sahara received a letter on April 11, 2012, from MCA, through which MCA expressed its desire to terminate the agreements between the two parties. According to MCA, due credit was not given to the state body during the speeches delivered by Saharasri Subrata Roy and Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan during the function organised by Sahara on April 8 before the first IPL match. MCA also conveyed their grievance on Saharasri’s statement for dedicating the stadium to the people of Pune and citizens of India,” the source alleged.
Sahara had organised a cultural show preceding the opening match, which saw performances by Bollywood stars and speeches by Bachchan, Mandira Bedi and Roy. The source added that Roy was hurt by the allegations made by MCA and following that he decided not to attend any match at the stadium.
The source went on to add that post the series of events, both the parties decided to appoint a joint committee for smooth operations, but according to him, the proposal was rejected by the MCA.
“Out of deepest hurt and repeated disappointment, without prejudice to all our rights and in particular to the contention that the agreements are valid and subsisting, Sahara has decided to not use the name ‘Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium’ for the venue any more. They shall be proposing a new alternative name, in accordance with the terms and conditions of the naming rights agreement executed between the parties,” the source added.