CHENNAI: Ordered to cough up a massive compensation to the tune of above Rs 4,000 crore, the BCCI is likely to go to court against the arbitrator’s decision to deem the termination of Deccan Chargers’ IPL franchisee contract unlawful. As a first step, BCCI has to deposit the amount it has been asked to pay.
A similar verdict awarded to Kochi Tuskers Kerala by an arbitrator in 2017 was challenged by BCCI. That arbitration was also about terminating the franchisee contract and the amount was Rs 550 crore subject to increase with time if not paid. According to estimates, it’s above Rs 800 crore now and the BCCI is still to pay it.
Although there are indications that the BCCI will go to court against the Deccan Chargers verdict, it’s not official at the moment. “Arguments in this arbitration closed in 2018. We don’t know enough about it to comment. We have to study the order and get in touch with our legal team before deciding whether to challenge this in court,” said BCCI treasurer Arun Dhumal, who became an office-bearer with Sourav Ganguly and Jay Shah in 2019 October.
According to UN Banerjee, former chief legal advisor of BCCI, one can go to court against an arbitrator’s order. But in this case, the BCCI will have to first deposit the amount it has been asked to pay. “One has to secure the amount stated in the arbitrator’s order before appealing against that decision in the court which appointed the arbitrator,” said Banerjee.
This means the BCCI will either have to deposit Rs 4,000-odd crore (the compensation it has been asked to pay) in Bombay High Court or furnish a bank guarantee for the same amount before it can start arguing against the arbitrator’s order.A key member of the late Jagmohan Dalmiya’s legal team which won a number of cases related to BCCI matters, Banerjee added that the board did not pay heed to his advice when the Deccan Chargers case came up. “It was in 2015 and I said the BCCI should appeal against the appointment of the arbitrator on the grounds of bias. But the BCCI did not listen to me.” Shashank Manohar was the board president at that time.