Khandheri stadium, in Rajkot, the venue of the first test match between India and England bore a look of utter bewilderment and disappointment yesterday. Lakhs of fans who thronged Rajkot to have a glimpse of their favourite cricket stars in action were in for a big surprise when they were unable to get tickets for the match. No, it was not a technical glitch, but one of the after-effects of the deregularisation of the ₹500 and ₹1,000 notes announced on November 8.

 

The cancellation of currency in these denominations by the Central Government left these cricket fans in a dilemma. Most of them had come from quite far off places to enjoy a good game of cricket and watch their cricket gods play.  

 

The refusal to sell tickets to people with these currency denominations led to a mad scramble, each fan trying to secure ₹100 notes in exchange of the higher denomination currency which they possessed. Ticket rates for the South Stand were ₹5,000 and ₹2,000, while the ticket prices for the East Stand were at ₹700, ₹600 and ₹500 per person. The ticket rates for West Stand were at ₹1,500 and ₹1,200, respectively.

 

While fans had lined up to see the ‘master strokes’ and 'brilliant catches’ of their favourite stars and had braved long queues in front of the ticket counters, their dreams were bowled out by the ‘master stroke’ from the BJP-government led by Narendra Modi, who is looking to catch black money hoarders.