Mumbai: Bombay High Court on Friday issued notice to Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) asking how it plans to provide water for maintaining the Pune stadium ground for IPL matches. CSK’s home matches were shifted out of Chennai to Pune recently due to anti-IPL protests in the state of Tamil Nadu.
While security concerns forced matches to be moved out of Chennai to Pune, there are serious concerns about hosting matches at the MCA Stadium. Drought-like conditions in the state of Maharasthtra have been a yearly affairs with water levels falling during summer months. Farmers in the state have staged numerous protests and many – especially in the Vidharba and Marathwada regions. As a result, the Bombay High Court on Friday asked how the stadium would be watered and taken care of considering the peak summer months have almost arrived. Earlier this year, the court had posed a similar question to MCA regarding maintainance of Wankhede Stadium. At the time, MCA had said it would not make use of portable water and instead, use water conserved through rain-water harvesting system. At the time, MCA’s counsel AS Khandeparkar had also said that around 3,30,000 litres of water will be required for the above purposes on each day of the IPL match in the city.
Maintaining the lush green outfields as per international standards is no easy task. A petition in Bombay High Court in 2013 had referred to statistics made available from cricket authorities, close to 65 lakh litre water had been used that year to maintain three stadiums – Wankhede in Mumbai, DY Patil in Navi Mumbai and Sahara Stadium in Pune – during the IPL that year. Social workers and environmental activists have gone to the extent of calling it criminal to use water for cricket when people were dying due to the lack of it.