The Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday asked the state government to file a comprehensive reply on how it planned to supply water for three IPL matches, as well as an action plan and policy for dealing with the water scarcity in the state over the next two months of harsh summer.
Hearing a petition challenging the conduct of three Mumbai Indians IPL matches in Jaipur, a HC bench comprising Justices Ajay Rastogi and DC Somani asked the government to file a response by 30th April.
“Going beyond the scope of the IPL matches, the HC asked the government what it planned to do regarding the water scarcity in the state, with a harsh summer and drought like conditions looming around the corner,” the petitioner’s lawyer Prateek Kasliwal told The Indian Express.
“While the state government conveyed to the hon’ble court that they were in a position to supply water for the matches, the court asked them to file a comprehensive reply, not just for the IPL, but regarding the overall sceanrio, in view of the summer around the corner,” he said.
The matter will be heard next on May 3rd.
While the state government sought more time to reply, the petitioner’s lawyer argued for an early response since the matches are scheduled for May 8th, 13th and 15th.
The PIL was filed last week by city based journalist Mahesh Pareek, after the Mumbai Indians and BCCI chose Jaipur as the team’s home ground for holding the remainder of its matches after the Bombay HC moved IPL matches out of Maharasthra.
Citing articles 21 and 47 of the constitution, the petition—with the Rajasthan government, BCCI and RCA as respondents—seeks a stay on the matches.
In an earlier hearing on 21st April, the HC had asked the state government and BCCI, why they had thought of conducting the matches in Jaipur, when the water situation in Rajasthan was worse than many states.
The state government had recently ironed out differences between BCCI and the Lalit Modi-led Rajasthan cricket association regarding the matches. While the BCCi did not want RCA involvement in the matches, Modi had warned the cricket body against holding the matches without involving it as “it would be illegal”.
The matches were moved out of Maharashtra on orders of the Bombay High Court and are scheduled to be held at the Sawai Mansingh Staidum in Jaipur, which MI chose as their home ground, after reportedly being offered Kanpur and Raipur as the other possible venues.