IPL 2016: Kanpur, Ranchi and Indore selected as alternate venues
IPL 2016: Kanpur, Ranchi and Indore selected as alternate venues

While Board of Control for Cricket in India is waiting nervously for the Bombay High Court’s decision on Tuesday, April 12, regarding the shifting of Indian Premier League matches from Maharashtra due to severe water crisis in the state, Sharad Pawar has played a masterstroke, which might  just see at least Wankhede Stadium hosting it share of eight IPL games.

Sensing that there was growing unrest among NGOs, politicians, and the general public cover plans  to provide 40 lakh litres of water to Wankhede to help it host IPL matches this season even as the state reels under the effect of a severe drought , the MCA president requested the Royal Western India Turf Club (RWITC) to help provide water to the iconic stadium from its Sewage Treatment Plant at the  Mahalaxmi Race Course. With the racing season about to end, the RWITC, which uses this water to maintain its racetrack, much to the relief of the MCA and local IPL franchise Mumbai Indians, has agreed  to Pawar’s plea.

In a letter to Pawar, as per TOI on Monday, the RWITC secretary BA Engineer wrote, “Our club has received a request to provide seven-eight tankers of our sewage treated water on a daily basis up to the end of May 2016, to water the MCA’s Wankhede Stadium. We can supply this water so that acute water crisis can be overcome to enable you to conduct your cricket matches. The charges will be decided at a later date.”

“I am thankful to the RWITC for agreeing to help us out in this time of crisis,” Pawar told TOI from New Delhi. This eco-friendly mode of supplying water to the Wankhede Stadium’s pitch and rest of the ground may just convince the Bombay High Court to allow the IPL show to go on at the Wankhede. If that does happen, it will be another feather in the cap for the seasoned politician in his successful innings as a cricket administrator.

The RWITC had , a few years back, asked the BMC, which ensures that sewage water is directed towards the Arabian sea, for permission to launch this Sewage Treatment Plant to meet his water requirement. The requirement. The permission, to treat sewage water for use, was granted by the BMC.

Kings XI Punjab owner Ness Wadia has supported the idea of shifting IPL matches out of Maharashtra due to the water crisis. “We are considering shifting the matches on humanitarian grounds. The consideration has been done internally. Obviously, we can’t hold matches when people of India are suffering and water crisis is a serious issue,” Wadia remarked to Times Now on Monday.