February 27, 2008

No goodwill for Pawar

Sidharth Monga

The IPL doesn't seem to have won Sharad Pawar, the BCCI president, too many brownie points with his political rivals in India. Dubbing the auctioning of cricketers by the BCCI-promoted Indian Premier League as ''a gambling game of industrialists'', Bal Thackeray, Pawar’s friend and hardline party Shiv Sena’s chief, has called for a fullstop. North India-based JD (U) president Sharad Yadav lashed out at the league too: "It was a day of national shame when cricketers were put on auction. It is a vulgar display of wealth and shameless demonstration of money power."

The Marxists in Bengal haven't been too impressed either: Gurudas Dasgupta, veteran communist leader, demanded that the government ban that form of cricket and even investigate the source of funds for venture. It seems that Pawar, the union agricultural minister, has plenty on his hands.

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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