Mumbai, April 20: The Bombay High Court on Wednesday allowed the Indian Premier League (IPL) match between Mumbai Indians and Rising Pune Supergiants to be held in Pune on May 1 as scheduled, despite having earlier ordered that all IPL matches scheduled to be held in Maharashtra after April 30 be shifted out of the state.
The decision was given by a division bench comprising Justice V.M. Kanade and Justice MS Karnik after hearing an application filed by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) general manager (games development) Ratnakar Shetty, urging the court to allow the match to be held as scheduled, citing logistical and other difficulties in shifting it to another venue.
"As an exception, due to logistical reasons mentioned by BCCI in the application we are allowing the match to be held in Pune on May 1," the bench said.
In his plea before the court, Shetty pointed out that the Pune team is scheduled to play against Gujarat Lions on April 29 in their home ground, which would have made it difficult to shift the May 1 match outside Maharashtra and "make all arrangements for the same in just a single day".
Shetty further stated that shifting the the May 1 match to another venue outside Maharashtra will mean that the Pune players and support staff can travel only in the afternoon of April 30 as the match on April 29 will carry on till late in the night.
The court had passed an order on April 13, directing all IPL matches to be held in Maharashtra after April 30 to be shifted to different venues due to the prevalent water shortage in the state. The court's decision meant that a total of 13 IPL matches, including two play-offs and the final would have to shifted.
The court had issued the order on a PIL by an NGO called Loksatta Movement which alleged that holding IPL matches in the state will mean that more than 60 lakh litres of water will be used for preparing the pitches and maintaining the grounds.