The Bangladesh Cricket Board is divided into two camps over giving the old franchises of the Bangladesh Premier League another chance provided they clear their dues.
BCB officials said apart from Dhaka Gladiators and Khulna Royal Bengals the owners of all other franchises have contacted with them and expressed their interests to stay involved with the tournament.
The owners of Rangpur Riders and Sylhet Royals publicly expressed their interests and said they will clear out the payments to get back their ownerships.
With holders Gladiators barred from participating because of their involvement in match-fixing scandal, the BCB asked six other franchises to clear their dues by August 27.
BPL governing council secretary Ismail Haider Mallick said on Sunday that he is in favour of retaining the franchises considering the humanitarian ground provided they fulfill all conditions.
‘If they can pay their old dues and also fulfill the other conditions required to own a new franchise,’ said Mallick. ‘Of course this is my personal opinion as the final decision will be taken by the board.’
‘They had spent lots of money in the first two editions and now if we don’t allow them to take part despite clearing their dues it will be an injustice,’ he said.
BCB insiders said the BCB is also considering the legal aspects as some of the old franchises already threatened to take legal action if they are not allowed to play in the tournament despite clearing all their dues.
The BCB already admitted that despite all the fuss involving the tournament it has proved to be a profitable venture and it insiders said they don’t want to drag it to the court which can make the next edition uncertain.
Mallick said that the BCB already profited Tk 15 to 16 crore from the tournament and if all the franchises clear their dues the profit will augment to approximately Tk 50 crore.
BCB president Nazmul Hasan on Saturday informed that six franchises owed TK 36 crore to the BCB.
Nazmul however did not make it clear whether they will allow the old franchises in the next addition.
Asked about the issue, BCB chief executive officer Nizamuddin Chowdhury said if the old franchises clear their payment they will be definitely included in the bidding process.
They will be surely included in the bidding process if they complete the payment. But there is no guarantee that they will get the same franchise as it is completely a new bidding,’ he said.
‘We will judge every bid according to its merit.’
The BCB already wooed 11 new bidders for the franchises, though it was alleged that some defaulters are trying to get involved under the fresh banner.
Mizanur Rahman, once a co-owner of Sylhet Royals, submitted a fresh bid under the guise of Sohana Group.
BPL governing council chairman Afzalur Rahman said that he is still unsure how they will consider his bid.
‘Mizan informed us that he has parted away with Sylhet Royals through a letter. But still we have to be careful about him as it’s all about the reputation of the owners that is our most important consideration,’ he said.
-With New Age input