Guwahati, Oct. 25: Gauhati High Court today restrained the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) from taking a final decision regarding the selection of a new team for the Indian Premier League (IPL).
The court passed the order while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a city-based businessman and social worker, Ghisa Lal Agarwal, challenging the tender notice dated October 14, 2012, issued by the BCCI inviting bids from 12 cities for a new team in the IPL from 2013 onwards.
Agarwal filed the PIL stating that Guwahati, despite having necessary infrastructure and facilities, was not included in the bidding process.
The petitioner also sought a court directive to the BCCI to include Guwahati in the list of cities for bidding of the new IPL team.
Admitting the PIL, a single-judge bench of Justice B.D. Agarwal today issued notices to the respondents, including the BCCI, and sought their reply by November 7.
Apart from the BCCI, department of sports under the Union ministry of youth affairs and sports and the Assam Cricket Association were also made respondents in this case.
“Till the returnable date (November 7), the BCCI is restrained from taking a final decision pursuant to the tender dated October 14, 2012, with regard to the selection of the new team,” Justice Agarwal, in his order, said.
“However, the process for selection of the new team for the IPL for 2013 may proceed subject to the aforesaid restriction,” the order said.
“It is made clear that pendency of the writ petition in Gauhati High Court shall not be considered as a bar on the part of the BCCI to include Guwahati as a new team for IPL,” it added.
Advocates Ashok Saraf and Amit Goyal appeared in the court on behalf of the petitioner.
The BCCI on October 14 issued a newspaper advertisement inviting bids for a new IPL team from 12 cities — Ahmedabad, Cuttack, Dharamsala, Indore, Hyderabad, Kanpur, Kochi, Nagpur, Noida, Rajkot, Ranchi and Visakhapatnam.
The bids were invited for a new IPL team to replace the Deccan Chargers.
The petitioner’s counsel, Ashok Saraf, stated in the court that Guwahati, which is the gateway to the Northeast, has better infrastructure and facilities than some of the cities included for auction of the new IPL team.
Saraf argued that exclusion of Guwahati from the bidding was an act of discrimination by the BCCI.
He contended that since several international cricket matches have been successfully organised in Guwahati, there was no reason for excluding the city.