The BCCI President Ranbir Singh Mahendra today threatened to call off the Indo-Pak series if the TV telecast issue was not sorted out.

The issue is currently in the Madras High Court. The BCCI chief insists that his threat to call off the India-Pakistan series is not an attempt to pressurise the courts.

“How can we pressurise the court in India. As far as we are concerned, we’ve been trying our level best to see that we are permitted. But unless there is a court judgement we cannot do anything because there is a stay,” said Ranbir Singh Mahendra.

ZEE prepared to telecast cricket in short notice

ZEE TV, which had its $308 million bid turned down by BCCI, says this is an extremely unnecessary situation.

ZEE says if they are given the rights, they are ready to telecast at a 24-hour notice.

“We have already stated an unconditional offer from our side. We went to the extent of saying that we will produce it at our risk and our cost.

“And what monies will be collected can be handed over to the BCCI, to the court or to an account where it can be deposited,” said Ashish Kaul, vice president, ZEE Telefilms.

Whatever the final arrangement, the fact is that these delays have already meant losses for everybody – the BCCI, the television channels, the sponsors and even the players.

“It has a snowballing effect. So unless the board gets the right amount, the board gives it to channel, the channel then further gives it to advertisers…nothing can move unless all these steps are taken,” said Lokesh Sharma, managing director, 21st Century Media.

An unhappy situation no doubt but now its only the courts which could provide a solution.

Third Umpire

According to ICC rules, a series has to be telecast as a third umpire is needed.

The telecast row has already led to the upcoming Indo-Pak series being delayed by three days. The big fear now is that it could be cancelled.