The Cricket Control Council in India (BCCI) on Wednesday informed the Delhi High Court that the decision had been taken to indefinitely suspend the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) amid growing COVID-19 cases.
The submission was made on Wednesday during a public interest litigation (PIL) hearing that examined why the IPL was given priority over public health.
After taking note of the submissions made by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta representing the BCCI, the Bench of Judge DN Patel and Judge Jasmeet Singh adjourned the case for May 19, with neither side of the petitioner appearing in the case.
The plea was filed by lawyer Karan Singh Thukral and social activist Inder Mohan Singh. Thukral is a practicing lawyer and is currently suffering from COVID-19 and was distressed to see the state of affairs in the city and the complete failure of the medical system.
In the plea filed through lawyers HS Thukral and Kapil Kumar, the petitioners urged that the respondents be instructed to hold an investigation into why the IPL was a priority over public health. He had also sought to stop the matches with immediate effect.
“Issue a writ of Mandamus or any other appropriate writ, order or direction directing the respondent (s) to conduct an investigation into why IPL is a priority over public health,” the plea reads.
The petitioners have asked the High Court to suspend the conduct of upcoming IPL matches in Delhi.
“Although point 10 of the Delhi government notification dated April 19 makes it clear that the lockdown is exceptional for any stadium hosting national and international level matches without spectators present, there is an urgent need to prioritize the public health in relation to these matches, ”they said. .
The petitioners added that this was a mockery of the emotions of these ordinary people who are constantly struggling to get beds and space to cremate their loved ones.
They said the government had hurt the feelings of citizens by prioritizing entertainment over the lives of innocent people, featuring a bad game of authority and responsibility.
The petitioner said that the state, by its reckless acts, has shown itself to be a callous and capitalist figure losing every inch of public trust in it. The government has very conveniently turned a blind eye to the whole situation by presenting a completely reckless and callous approach to the pandemic, he added.
The 2021 IPL was suspended on Tuesday following several positive cases of Covid-19 across all franchises. In a statement, the IPL said the decision was taken “unanimously” by the tournament board and BCCI.
“The BCCI does not want to compromise on the safety of players, support staff and other participants involved in the organization of the IPL,” the statement said. “This decision was made with the safety, health and well-being of all stakeholders in mind.”
“These are tough times, especially in India, and while we have tried to bring some positivity and joy, it is imperative that the tournament is now suspended and everyone returns to their families and loved ones. in these difficult times “. he added.
The statement also said that BCCI would do “everything in its power to ensure the safe and secure passage of all participants in IPL 2021”.