MUMBAI: The Bombay High Court on Monday directed the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) and state authorities to provide basic amenities like toilets, drinking water and medical aid on public grounds, saying that “your The next big star could come from “these public grounds”. A bench of Justices Anil Menon and MS Karnik observed that many children and adults play cricket and other sports on public grounds across the state. Most of these grounds, which come under cricket associations or civic bodies, lack basic facilities.

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The internal memorandum of both the BCCI and the MCA stipulates training camps or providing basic facilities for the promotion of cricket at such places where the game of cricket is being played. The bench was hearing a PIL filed by Bombay High Court lawyer Rahul Tiwari. Tiwari, personally present as a party (representing himself in the case), told the court that he himself was a professional cricketer and participated in various state and district level cricket tournaments.

BCCI lawyers told the high court that most of the public grounds in the state come under the jurisdiction of municipal bodies

Tiwari said, “When someone books a public ground for practice. He has to pay the fee to the civic body or the sports federation under whose jurisdiction the ground falls. Even where professional cricket camps are organized, there is no clean drinking water or even toilets that can be used by the players. Come under the jurisdiction of municipal bodies.

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He further said that even in cases where they organized camps or practice matches. Permission to provide basic facilities was often denied by the concerned civic body or state authorities. But to this the bench said that such statement is not acceptable. The court asked MCA and BCCI, “Have you ever applied and then denied permission? File an affidavit.”

So many promising kids are playing on the public ground

The bench said, “It is not an adversarial suit as you can get your next star from a public ground. So many promising children are playing on the public ground. The court also said that the cricket association and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) cannot cite paucity of funds. As a reason for not providing basic facilities. The bench said that the Maharashtra government, BMC, MCA and BCCI should file their respective affidavits within two weeks. Detailing the number of grounds in their jurisdiction and the facilities provided there.