On Monday, the Supreme Court denied the e-auctioning of IPL media rights. A panel comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chadrachud did not consider the argument of BJP leader Subramanian Swamy that the ongoing tendering process for IPL media rights should be directed to e-auctioning.
The IPL matches are scheduled to start in April 2018. Senior advocate Parag Tripathi reckoned that was a better option as all the bidders put their best bid in a sealed envelope to get the media rights. Supreme Court issues show cause notice to BCCI acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary.
The apex court had earlier asked COA chief Vinod Rai to file an affidavit stipulating how the ongoing tender process was better than the e-auction. On July 28, the SC had sought the response of BCCI on Swamy’s plea that e-auction of the media rights should be done to ensure transparency as the rights are to be given for the next five years.
Last month, the SC said that they will think over Swami’s plea to understand urgent hearing in the case after Swamy held to the apex court verdicts to support his point that it has been held that auctioning was the best method of awarding contracts.
Swami’s petition read, “This petition prays that the distribution of IPL rights, which is scheduled on July 17, 2017, should be done in the most transparent mode available, that is via E-Auction.” It had speculated that all the activities of BCCI were begun with “tacit concurrence” of the state governments and the Centre “who are not only fully aware but supportive of the activities of the Board.”
Swami’s plea further said, “It is a requirement that non-discriminatory and transparent method with the best international practices must be adopted for distribution of the valuable media rights so as to ensure the maximum revenue in the larger national interest.”
The BJP leader had alleged that there was a consistent effort by settled interests to try and build a monopoly by getting the valuable rights in a non-transparent manner. CoA takes a jibe at BCCI; says misconstructed SC’s order to bar Johri from attending SGM.
However, Swami claimed, “Huge money is involved amounting to Rs 25000-30000 crore in the valuable rights associated with the game of cricket in India which makes it mandatory to have the auction process robust, completely transparent, in order to maximise revenue and prevent vested interests from making undue gains.”