Thursday, March 19, 2009

Modi accused of taking IPL out of Jaipur

IPL commissioner Lalit Modi's troubles seem unending. Now the Rajasthan government protests against his decision to pull out matches from Jaipur.The state government has hit out at Modi for "taking the IPL out of Rajasthan", after it had expressed concerns over providing security on a few dates. The government now says it had a problem with just a few match days and not the entire tournament.Rajasthan Home Minsiter Shanti Dhariwal has called lalit Modi "a cheat" and has said Modi was responsible for pulling IPL out of Jaipur. He blamed Modi for acting against the state because he recently lost the election in the Rajasthan Cricket Association."He never negotiated with us, never discussed with us. In election one party wins and the other loses like in matches but that doesn't mean you leave the state and walk away with matches. The people of Rajasthan will never forgive him for this," he fumed."The way they've pulled out the matches from Jaipur it puts a question mark on their intention to hold them in Jaipur in the first place," Dhariwal said. "It's an arbitrary decision for which people will not forgive Modi. The people of Rajasthan are feeling cheated." 

"We had only asked for two dates out of six to be rescheduled," he said. "Rajasthan has been given biased treatment. We were preparing for the IPL matches to be conducted in Jaipur when we got to know that the matches have been pulled out of Jaipur that too through newspapers. It's shocking that there has been no communication with the State government on this."The IPL commissioner, however, has distanced himself from the controversy, saying it's a matter that needs to be sorted out between the Home Ministry and the state of Rajasthan."About Jaipur you have to ask the Home Ministry," Modi said. "We had scheduled the dates but there were issues with the paramilitary forces because of which the Home Minister asked us to scrap the dates. It's up to the Rajasthan government and the Home Ministry to decide; it is between them and not between us."

IPL Chief Executive Officer Sundar Raman dismissed any ulterior motive on the part of IPL to drop Jaipur and said it was a very complicated procedure."To set the record straight – Jaipur was one of the first venues to express interest in hosting IPL and the initial schedule that IPL submitted to the Home Ministry had five matches scheduled in Jaipur," Raman said. "However, the confirmation from state government of Rajasthan had a rider, which required central forces support. The Ministry of Home Affairs had made it clear that no central forces will be available." 

"The schedule has since undergone multiple iterations," he said. "We are operating with constraints and it would be unfair to call this a deliberate effort on the part of IPL for changes in the schedule that have been necessitated."

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