The BCCI is set to pay a huge compensation of more than Rs 800 crore to disbanded IPL franchise Kochi Tuskers Kerala for terminating their contract in 2011.
"Kochi Tuskers has demanded Rs 850 crore as compensation. Today we discussed the matter at IPL GC meeting and we will now place the matter before general body. Let them take a call but obviously, some negotiations are needed," IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla said after the meeting.
Kochi Tuskers owners had won an arbitration in 2015, challenging the BCCI decision to encash bank guarantee, citing breach of the contractual agreement. The RC Lahoti headed panel had directed the BCCI to pay Rs 550 crore as compensation with 18% annual penalties on failing to do so. For the past two years, BCCI was adamant in neither paying the compensation nor taking back the franchise in the IPL.
"We have to pay Kochi compensation. All legal options have been exhausted. Normally when arbitration decision goes against you, it will be stupid to move Supreme Court appealing against it. We have no option but the question is how much," PTI quoted an influential IPL GC member after coming out of the meeting.
The decision to terminate Kochi Tuskers' contract was taken by former BCCI president Shashank Manohar, citing breach of franchise agreement, something majority of the BCCI officials were against.
"It was one man's obstinacy that is now costing us a bomb. Had Shashank not taken that decision, we could have worked our way out. In fact, before Kochi went to arbitration, they had asked for a compensation of Rs 300 crore. Even then our officials showed arrogance and now we will be forced to shell out more than double," the angry official further added.
The BCCI will be trying to negotiate and bring down the compensation to an optimum level. "Even then, we will not be able to bring down to less than Rs 600 crore, I feel," said the official, who had been associated with the case.