Mithun takes over ICL's Kolkata Tigers

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Kolkata, Mar 26 (UNI) Bollywood megastar of the eightees Mithun Chakraborty has bought Indian Cricket League's (ICL) Kolkata Tigers.

Talking to UNI, Mr Chakraborty said, ''Yes, I have bought the Kolkata Tigers of the ICL. Tomorrow everything will be formally announced after completing some legal formalities.'' Asked why he took a plunge, the 'veteran actor said, ''I have always been a sports lover and had organised the Raj Kapoor Trophy in Chembur, Mumbai, for several years where big stars played. But it was not just passion that made me buy the team; there is business in it also.'' ''I am an entertainer and Twenty20 is a fantastic form of entertainment.There is craze and good business in it. So I decided to try my luck,'' he added.

Asked how much he had spent on the team, he said, ''At present I cannot reveal the figure, but it certainly is a triple digit in crores.'' On whether he had really asked to rechristen the side as Bengal Tigers, he said, ''I have strongly recommended it. Kolkata is the capital of Bengal, but my side will represent all the people of the state. I have fans in every corner of the state and can't deny them.'' On what made him go for a team in ICL and not IPL, Mithun replied, ''The realisation that I could even own a team and make it into a profitable business venture dawned late on me.'' So will it be Mithun-Shah rukh competition to win the hearts of Bengal, he said, ''There is no question of competing with Shah Rukh.

He is one of the finest gentlemen I have come across and he gives a lot of respect to his co-stars. Besides, you can't compare our popularity. He is way above me.'' On whether his Bengal Tigers would imbibe his fighting mentality, pat came the karate king's reply, ''Undoubtedly so. Life has never been a bed of roses for me.'' UNI BA KK RKM BD1900

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