Friday, December 17, 2010

More on IPL Arbitration.

As we had posted earlier on the IPL arbitration earlier which can be accessed here and here, following the “appeal” by BCCI in the Bombay High Court against the stay to the termination of its contract by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), the court today upheld the order passed by Retired Justice B N Srikrishna, the single arbitrator. The single judge Bench of Justice S F Vazaifdar on 14th December dismissed the appeal filed by BCCI challenging the stay granted by the arbitrator and permitted Rajasthan Royals to participate in the IPL-4 auction that is to be held on January 8 and 9.

However, the court has imposed a condition on Rajasthan Royals directing them to file an affidavit before it by January 3 specifying full details of its ownership pattern and mode of control and that the three owners are in full control of their investment companies. As per the directions of the court, Rajasthan Royals will also have to submit US$2.83 million as guarantee to the BCCI for the contract and US$ 18 million as bank guarantee for the players.
Similarly, in case of Kings XI, BCCI suffered yet another setback the very next day when its appeal to a higher bench of the Bombay High Court against the orders passed by single judge bench of Justice Shiavax Vazifdar got dismissed. A two judge bench comprising of Justice D Y Chandrachud and Justice Anoop Mohata ruled that the entire basis of the letter of termination issued by the BCCI to the Mohali franchise was "erroneous and flawed". Earlier, due to Justice Srikrishna rescuing himself from the arbitration proceedings, Justice Vazifdar had granted interim relief till a new arbitrator was appointed and finally disposed of the dispute, which itself could take a long time.

Kings XI will also have to clear its pending payments to its players, an amount running up to $7.77 million, guarantee an amount of $18 million over the next two years (at the rate of $9 million per year) to protect player payments in case the franchise participates in the league, and $3.5 million to the BCCI as security towards any damage incurred by the board in case the final verdict goes against Kings XI.

The two judgments, where on one hand have given serious series shocks to BCCI, which we are sure would move to the apex court in all probabilities, they have proved to be yet another stance of pro arbitration judgments (especially the Rajasthan Royal’s case) in the Indian legal system.

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