THE BOMBAY High Court on Friday issued a notice to the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA), asking it about its plans of providing water to the ongoing Indian Premiere League (IPL) matches scheduled to be held at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune.
A division bench of Justice A S Oka and Justice R I Chagla directed the MCA to reply to the court by April 18.
The court was hearing a 2016 public interest litigation (PIL) filed by NGO Loksatta Movement, which had maintained that 60 lakh litres of water was proposed to be used to maintain the pitches in the three venues nominated for IPL-2016 in Maharashtra.
Lawyer Rakesh Singh, appearing for the petitioners, informed the court that six IPL-2018 matches, which were to be held in Chennai, have now been shifted to Pune. On the other hand, 11 matches are to be held at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Singh said as Pune receives water from Pawana river, if the matches are to be held in its stadium, the state government must tell the court how it proposes to provide water for the same.
The MCA counsel told the court that the matches have been shifted to Pune because of certain issues. The counsel was referring to the threat by a Tamilian outfit to unleash snakes at M A Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, as hundreds of Cauvery protesters briefly took over key roads leading to the venue, to disrupt the first IPL match of this season on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Ajay Chaudhari, assistant engineer (Water Works) of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, filed an affidavit in the court stating that the “corporation, after taking into consideration the requirement of offices and working staff and also the requirements in toilets and bathroom, has sanctioned 80 mm diametered water connection to Wankhede Stadium”.
“The corporation recovers charges from them as per applicable commercial rate, which is Rs 49.16 per 1,000 litres,” he added. The affidavit said that no special water supply is being given to any type of match or event being held at Wankhede Stadium since the last five years and the same policy would continue.
The affidavit added that till date, it has not received any application from Wankhede Stadium for additional water supply.