The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed Mumbai Cricket Association’s plea to shift Indian Premier League (IPL) matches out of drought-hit Maharashtra.
The apex court agreed with an earlier high court verdict that ordered 13 matches to be moved out of Maharashtra, which is facing the worst drought in decades.
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The Mumbai High Court had on April 13 ordered games of the cash-rich IPL tournament scheduled after April 30 to be moved out of the state, saying claims of financial liabilities made by the organisers could not override the “larger cause of the people” and that the court could “not turn a blind eye to the plight of the people”.
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The high court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by an NGO against holding IPL matches in Maharashtra, where nearly 70% of the state has been declared drought-hit, forcing the government to impose rationing in many parts. The PIL said that as much as 60 lakh litres of water was proposed to be used for maintaining cricket pitches in the three venues that will host the matches.
The order affected 13 matches in Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur, including the final schedule for May 29 in Mumbai’s Wankhede stadium. The final was later shifted to Bengaluru.