The Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) has found itself in a spot of bother yet again after it was reported to have misused funds allotted to it for hosting the one-off Test between India and Bangladesh in the city last month. Among the irregularities it has been accused of includes raking up a food bill of Rs 75 lakh aside from giving away several tickets for free.
According to a report in The Hindu, a division bench of the Hyderabad High Court comprising of Acting Chief Justice Ramesh Ranganathan and Justice Shameem Akhter were handed a report by Ratnakar Shetty, who was appointed as the 'match observer' for the Test by the BCCI on the Supreme Court's directions. The bench went on to describe the contents of the report as 'damning', which also listed the 2,000-strong police contingent deployed at the venue during the match among the beneficiaries of free meals, aside from members and officials.
The HC also criticised the allotment of 25 percent of the total tickets that went up for sale as 'complimentary', the exact figures of which has been calculated to 11,500 out of 39,000 in a report in The Indian Express, with irregularities in tender also coming to the fore. A majority of the contracts that were awarded for the match had no proper bids in place, with a couple of contracts being settled on the basis of single-vendor bidding.
If that wasn't enough, then the HCA managed to violate the rules set by the Supreme Court-appointed Lodha committee by letting an official, who was supposed to vacate his post as per the latest directions, continue to hold office and carry out duties in the one-off Test.
This is not the first time the HCA has found itself it facing charges of corruption. An audit report by US-based organisation Deloitte accused the association of distributing gold coins among its managing committee members, aside from giving their wives jewellery.
India defeated Bangladesh by 208 runs in the one-off Test that took place between 9 and 13 February. Among the highlights of the match was Indian captain Virat Kohli slamming his fourth double-century, with Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja capturing four wickets each in Bangladesh's second innings to bowl them out for 250, having set them a target of 459.