Subramanian Swamy's petition for an e-auction for the Indian Premier League (IPL) rights has been sidelined by a bench appointed by the Supreme court. The BCCI is going to go ahead with the auction via closed and escalated bids and is expecting a tough competition between 24 competitors.
A bench, consisting of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud, set up by the Supreme Court of India heard the petition of Rajya Sabha member Subramanian Swamy on e-auction for the Indian Premier League (IPL) rights and passed the verdict that the existing process of BCCI is going to stay.
The board was confident about the SC verdict going in their favor. Their contention remained that "cricket is not coal" and the fact that "no sports property across the world gets sold through an e-auction".
Senior advocate Parag Tripathi, present in the SC-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA), stated that the existing tender process is the apt approach. In the existing process, all bidders submit their best bid in a sealed envelope. SC has asked Vinod Rai, the CoA chief, to submit an affidavit which will be stating that the current process for auctioning of media rights was the best possible way.
BCCI is geared up to begin the auction through closed bids and is expecting a stiff competition from 24 companies that have taken the Invitation To Tender (ITT). Star India Pvt Ltd and Sony Pictures Networks (SPN) are in the lead to bid for the television rights. Along with it, overseas e-commerce giant Amazon is in a strife with India's leading 4G service provider Jio to bid for the digital rights. Social network giants like Facebook and Twitter and along with Times Internet Ltd have picked the ITT.
As per a TOI report, market sources are expecting the total value of the bid to be in excess of US$3b, keeping in mind the manner in which BCCI ended up selling the Team India jersey and IPL title rights recently.