The ICC has left no room for the BCCI to ignore the diktat. If the BCCI fails to comply, the ICC will deduct the amount from India’s share in the central pool revenue. The ICC has also threatened to shift the ICC events out of India, national daily Times of India has reported.
The amount relates to the taxes deducted at source by the 2016 World T20 official broadcaster Star TV from the ICC’s payments. The ICC has given the BCCI till December 31 to make the payment.
The ICC is shifting the burden to the BCCI as the latter had failed to get the tax waiver from the Union Government. Cricket’s world governing body, headed by former BCCI president Shashank Manohar, has also warned that it will shift the 2021 ICC Champions Trophy and the 2023 ICC World Cup out of India if the Indian cricket board fails to take the tax costs. The BCCI has got the rights to host the Champions Trophy and the 2023 World Cup in India.
The higher tax costs on the organisation of “non-Olympic” big ticket sports events have already witnessed the Formula 1 Grand Prix being moved out of India only after two seasons as the Union Government had declined to consider any tax reliefs.
The ICC has reportedly reminded the BCCI of its demand, claimed to have been mentioned in the minutes of ICC’s board meeting in Singapore in October. The BCCI in its defence has said that it never agreed to the demand. It has reportedly asked for a copy of the minutes, which should establish that the BCCI has agreed to take the tax burden. “The ICC hasn’t provided any minutes to the BCCI yet,” TOI has quoted an anonymous source as saying.
“And now, the ICC is shying away from sharing any minutes because they don’t have any. They just want to recover that money from India,” sources said. “Time and again, Shashank has targeted BCCI for his own personal agenda.”
The BCCI is reportedly prepared to take legal round. Should ICC fail to share the minutes, no payment will be made and should the ICC deduct the money from India’s revenue, legal recourse will be sought, the paper has reported. “It’s become fashionable to blame BCCI,” said a board member.
“Biting the hand that feeds, eh? Is that what it has come down to? A sports body that has economic value primarily because it feeds on India’s commercial stake in the game is telling India that it cannot host a World Cup? And that too with an Indian heading that organisation right now? What a joke,” said a senior BCCI member.