New Delhi: The Sahara Group accused the BCCI of "betrayal of trust" while rejecting claims of the Board that the IPL team was to be blamed for the controversy surrounding the franchise fee, leading to Pune Warriors pulling out of the Twenty20 tournament.
     
A day after Sahara Group pulled out its team Pune Warriors from IPL, citing BCCI's decision to encash its bank guarantee following a prolonged financial dispute as the reason, the Board came out with its version saying that it has always wanted the impasse to end.
     
The BCCI said that the Sahara Group had not responded to the BCCI's communication sent to the company after the deadline to pay the franchise fee due was over and it had no other option but to encash the bank guarantee.
     
Reacting to the BCCI's claims, Sahara Group said the fact that the Board would encash the bank guarantee a day after Pune Warriors played their last match in the ongoing IPL was a case of "betrayal of trust".
     
"... Mr Rajiv Shukla, Chairman IPL had a discussion with our Chairman, Shri Subrata Roy Sahara, in which our Chairman had suggested that we are ready to make the final installment payment and is ready to exit amicably if IPL doesn't reduce the franchisee fee. But Shri Shukla had assured our Chairman to hold on and said that he will resolve the issue and till then the bank guarantee will not be touched," Sahara Group said in a statement.
     
"Moreover, the IPL Chairman told Shri Roy not to take any action and that he will revert on future course to be taken. And we believed Shri Shukla at that time. The bank guarantee lapsed on 2nd May and nobody from BCCI went for encashment of bank guarantee which gave us more reasons to believe in the assurance made by Shri Shukla.
     
"However after our last match on 19th May, the next day (20th May) BCCI representative went to Bank for encasement of Bank guarantee. It was a clear case of betrayal of trust inspite of assurances of IPL Chairman. It is evident now, that BCCI had not moved on 2nd May for revoking the bank guarantee as this would have jeopardize their tournament," it said.
     
Sahara said that the company had been requesting the BCCI to revise the franchise fee for long as the number of matches had been reduced but to no avail.
    
Sahara Group also claimed that there was no discussion on the amount of franchise fee to be paid in the last meeting with the BCCI in February.

(Agencies)

Latest News from Sports News Desk