IPL2 and Genereal Elections
The crossroads at which IPL satnds today, I mean the second edition of the Indian Premier League as it clashes with the general election dates in several states and some of them expecially the maharashtra and Government showing red light for a go ahead! It indeed is a sad state of affairs for the tournament!
IPL in its avtar last year was a grand success even if it was commercial in nature, we got good entertaining cricket! Now the news or should I say the latest news is that IPL 2 is on its move out of India for rasons not purely cricketing! It is all right, there could be a better evolution of the game that way, it could in future ask countries to bid for holding the games in the next few years. If India or rather Indians are to be believed it is after all an Indian Premier League involving Indian Frabchise and more than 60 percent featuring Indian players it deserves to be staged in India. Some may also cite that no other country in India may be able to provide as vast viewership as India could.
Somehow the IPL 2 has been cast at the times when India faces its general elections a once in a five year affair and the one that does require law and order to be maintained during the various phases of the elections. In these circumstances, it would hardly be possible for security to be provided to the IPL 2. yet does it not send wrong signals to the world that India could not hold its general elections and a major sporting event together and also assure of security in both the events! One must find answers to such questions rather than politicising the issue as two major parties have engaged themselves in a political war and taking opposite stands as if their win or lossoing elections may be dependendt upon the outcome of their debate in favour or against the holding of IPL 2 in the country.
May I request the politicians of this country to not mix sports with political undertones. It definitely does not auguis well for the sportsman spirit. Cricket, as MAK Pataudi had wrongly assumed to be improtant enough to be a national game is far more important than that. National games can not be changed with changing fortunes for a sport. Hockey is our national sport but cricket enjoys a higher interest rate among Indians than Hockey does. There should not be any misgivings about that. I have no reasons to believe that IPL 2 could not be held in India alongside elections. yet if they wish to hold some parts of the games in another country for sake of Internationalising the event it would be a welcome move!
What I have to suggest is that some of the major games maybe the semi-finals and finals could be moved to another country not for fears of security alone but to acclerate the popularisation of the IPL in those countries. I think the group matches could have been rediuced to one per team instead of home and away matches, that in itself would have prompted the two warring groups at some sort of a compromising situation. I find that nitehr IPL nor government is willing to come to truce.
Don't take away the IPL from the India, it may never be able to come back as more and more countries may want to have it held in their countries and with the precedence being set here itr may be difficult for th eorganisers to turn down the requests. As a matter of fact, I had written at the end of first IPL that top four teams could play in more games in other countries. I say that again, that instead of more games, some of the games could be exported to other countries but not on the pretext of security but on the subject of extending a higher popularity of the league!
If I continue to write beyond this it might rob me of being herad, I believe that repetitive statements of saying the same thing in 10 ways does add to lethargy in the minds of the listeners. I wish that majority of the tournament stays in India and imortant games are palyed in another country on a rotation basis! if England gets a chance this time, next year should be South Africa and year next to that could even be Australia!
Hopefully the matter of IPL 2 is resolved amicably and apolitically.
Abhaya India March 23/24 2009 12:25 IST