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BCCI spent 100 crore on legal bills!

By Rashmi Nanda -

It might be astonishing, that within a short period Rs100 crore were spent by the Board of Control for Cricket in India in the country’s courtrooms, but all for a lost cause.

A BCCI source told Hindustan Times that the legal bill of the board for fighting the Indian Premier League (IPL) spot-fixing and betting scandal 2013, puts up to more than ₹100 crore.

As per an estimate, the Indian cricket Board paid more than ₹9 lakh per day towards its legal bill while fighting the case at different levels.

The amount includes the high appearance fee of legal experts like Aryama Sundaram, Kapil Sibal, Mukul Rohatgi, Shekhar Naphade and Arvind Datar, and the expenses of the Supreme Court appointed two investigative and advisory bodies, Justice Mukul Mudgal and Justice RM Lodha Committees.

The lawyer Shekhar Naphade received ₹1.3 crore in just two months last year for appearing in the Supreme Court against the Bihar Cricket Association and that case is in point. Since 2013, the legal experts of the BCCI were there in 91 hearings until the judgment of the apex court on Monday.

The Supreme Court had fixed ₹1 lakh for the three-member Mudgal Committee for every working day in October 2013. 

The committee was appointed to investigate the contentions of the spot-fixing and gambling. In November 2014, the Committee has submitted its final report on the matter.

A senior BCCI official said, “Till 2015, the BCCI spent about ₹57 crore on the IPL fixing-related cases. I can assess that it has crossed more than R100 crore, but see what we got it in return,” 

The official further stated, “On some issues, we were ill advised. Bringing in Justice (Markandey) Katju at a crucial stage of the case was one of the mistakes we made,” 

As a mere ₹17 crore, the yearly balance sheet of the BCCI lists legal and professional charges as long as March 2016 but the official figure is a poor reflection of the real spending.

While the BCCI sources said that the operating expense of the Lodha Committee stood at ₹3.5 crore, which figures further surprised everyone.

As it was taking into service in January 2015, the Supreme Court had permitted the Committee to fix its fee and incidental expenses for instance travel, hotel, transport and secretarial services, which were thinks essential for organizing its procedures.