The fate of Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals appeared to hang in the balance on Monday after the Supreme Court-appointed panel clarified that BCCI-IPL may immediately terminate an agreement with a franchisee or owner if their acts hurt the reputation of the T20 league and the game of cricket.
The panel has pointed out the relevant clauses in the franchise agreements between BCCI and India Cements — which owns CSK — and Jaipur IPL Cricket Pvt Ltd, which owns Rajasthan Royals, to underline the situation in which the agreement could be annulled.
Sub-clause (c) of clause 11.3 of the agreement says termination may result if “the franchisee, any franchisee group company and/or any owners acts in any way which has a material adverse effect upon the reputation or standing of the league, BCCI-IPL,
BCCI, the franchisee, the team (or any other team in the league) and/or the game of cricket”.
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CSK has been specifically indicted for violating clause 11.3, which prescribes for termination of the agreement.
The report says, “The Committee is… of the opinion that the franchisee owner of CSK is responsible for failing to ensure Meiyappan (team officials) had complied with the BCCI Anti-Corruption Code, IPL Operational Rules, IPL Regulations and hence the franchisee’s actions are in violation of Section 4.4.1 of the IPL Operational Rules and Clause 11.3 of the franchises agreement.”
The panel has recommended further investigation of allegations of betting against Rajasthan Royals part-owners Raj Kundra and Shilpa Shetty. While the Mudgal report says that the allegations, if proved, would constitute serious infraction of IPL rules, a supplementary report by senior advocate Nilay Dutta, the third member of the panel, has made it clear that the franchisee would suffer the consequences if charges are proved.
“Any such culpability on the part of the Kundras would fasten liability on the franchisee, Jaipur IPL Cricket Private Limited, and it would be incumbent to ascertain such liability of the franchisee for purposes of appropriate sanctions under the Operational Rules and/or the Franchise Agreement,” it has said.