MRTPC orders probe in BCCI ban on players joining ICL

MRTPC orders probe in BCCI ban on players joining ICL


New Delhi: The slugfest between BCCI and rival ICL has taken a new twist with anti-monopoly watchdog MRTPC initiating an investigation against the cricket board for threatening players with a life ban on joining the Subhash Chandra-promoted league.

Taking a suo moto cognizance through reports published in newspapers, MRTPC has directed its investigative arm Director General of Investigation and Registration (DGIR) to look into the threats given by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to players who join Indian Cricket League.

Moreover, the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Commission (MRPTC) has directed DGIR to look into the expulsion of some former cricket players by the BCCI on joining ICL.

According to sources, the Commission suspects BCCI is adopting restrictive trade practices, which are banned under the MRTP Act.

As per the Commission’s direction, DGIR would also inquire the aspects of BCCI’s denial to share infrastructure with ICL as all the stadiums and machinery are national assets and none could be deprived from using it, the sources added.

MRTPC has directed DGIR to submit its preliminary investigation report within 60 days.

It may be recalled that in 1994 DGIR had pulled up BCCI for adopting restrictive trade practices and imposed a fine. In an ex-parte order, the Commission’s single member bench of Sardar Ali had then held BCCI guilty of adopting restrictive trade practices.

If the current investigation reveals that the cricket body is adopting restrictive trade practices contrary to the interest of players, then MRTPC may pass a cease and desist order against BCCI.