The International Cricket Council (ICC) had directed the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) during its quarterly meeting recently, to talk to the government and get tax exemptions in order to host and conduct future ICC events in the country. The BCCI is supposed to host the 2021 T20 World Cup and 2023 ODI World Cup in India alone.
However, the ICC made it clear that if BCCI fails to get the tax exemptions from the government, it will be solely responsible for bearing the tax liability for hosting the mega ICC events. However, such kind of move from the international cricket board has not gone down with certain officials of the Indian board.
A senior BCCI official was quoted by the media as saying that the ICC are free to move the ODI and T20I World Cups out of India. He said so since the matter related to tax exemptions required approvals from government and putting extra and external pressure on it is not taken kindly by the government.
“We will abide by what the Tax Department and the Ministry decides on this. We would love for the World Cup to take place here, but if the ICC wants to play hard ball, they must be ready for everything,” the senior BCCI official was quoted.
He further said that the ICC is more than welcome to take the tournaments out of India and have them hosted elsewhere, but then BCCI will also move to take the revenue out of ICC and it will be left to be seen, which side ends up losing more. It has to be noted that cricket in India generates a majority of revenue for ICC.
“Those in-charge of administration are trying to take policy decisions without jurisdiction to do so. The ICC will find it difficult to hold the BCCI to those decisions since a lot of these decisions do not have the approval of the board,” the official said.
There is no way that the BCCI should agree to this
Another BCCI official alleged that while the ICC had an inclusive approach, it has always been looking out for ways to hurt the Indian cricket board and interests of the game in India. He said that it has been found that the ICC had different contracts with other member boards like Cricket Australia and was required only to make best efforts to get a tax exemption from their government to hosting the ICC events in the country.
The official said, “It was found earlier that the ICC had a different contract with different member boards. For example, Cricket Australia was only required to make best endeavors to get tax exemption while the BCCI was required to ensure tax exemption.”
The official also said that the present management of BCCI has been found wanting in this situation. The head of CoA wants to appear as a bigwig and wants to be in control of things happening in the BCCI.
“There is no way that the BCCI should agree to this. The ICC cannot, on the one hand, say that they aim to have an inclusive approach and on the other hand look at every possible opportunity to hurt India’s interest,” the official signed off.