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BCCI’s decision about Chinese sponsorship in IPL to be taken in ‘best interest of country’

BCCI gets Rs 440 crore annually from Chinese mobile brand Vivo – the principal sponsor of the cash-rich IPL – in a five-year deal that ends in 2022.

SNS | New Delhi |

The Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) decision about the Chinese sponsorship in the Indian Premier League (IPL) would be taken “in the best interest of cricket and country” in board’s next IPL review meeting.

According to a report by news agency ANI, a BCCI source has revealed that the cricket governing body is looking into all other issues regarding the subject and that the franchises would also get the chance to place their opinion.

“As of now, no date has been decided for the IPL review meeting. There are other issues that BCCI is looking into. The franchises are entitled to their opinion. We will make a decision which will be in the best interest of cricket and country. The meeting will take place once we work on all surrounding issues of IPL,” the news agency quoted the source.

The call to stop using Chinese products has been in the air ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged Indians to become atmanirbhar (self-reliant) and use ‘Made in India’ products. But with Indian and Chinese troops in a stand-off at the border region in Ladakh, which has resulted in the killing of 20 Indian soldiers, anti-China sentiment has become strongest.

Meanwhile, the BCCI gets Rs 440 crore annually from Vivo – the principal sponsor of the cash-rich Indian Premier League – in a five-year deal that ends in 2022.

Another Chinese mobile brand, Oppo, was the main sponsor of the Indian cricket team till September last year when Bengaluru-based educational technology firm Byju’s replaced it.

Earlier this month, the IPL had informed, “Taking note of the border skirmish that resulted in the martyrdom of our brave jawans, the IPL Governing Council has convened a meeting next week to review IPL’s various sponsorship deals.”

However, at the same time, the BCCI treasurer Arun Dhumal had informed that the world’s richest cricket body was not going to end its association with the Chinese brand.

“When you talk emotionally, you tend to leave the rationale behind. We have to understand the difference between supporting a Chinese company for a Chinese cause or taking help from Chinese company to support India’s cause,” Dhumal was quoted as saying by PTI.

“When we are allowing Chinese companies to sell their products in India, whatever money they are taking from Indian consumer, they are paying part of it to the BCCI (as brand promotion) and the board is paying 42 per cent tax on that money to the Indian government. So, that is supporting India’s cause and not China’s,” he argued.