State government asks MCA to either pay ₹120 crore or hand over Wankhede Stadium

The state government has asked the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) to pay ₹120 crore for lease renewal, unpaid dues, and alleged illegal alterations on the plot

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The Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) has landed in serious dilemma as Maharashtra government has asked the cricket association to either pay ₹120 crore or hand Wankhede Stadium over to the state government. As per a report in Mumbai Mirror, on April 16, Mumbai City Collector Shivaji Jondhale had issued a notice to MCA demanding ₹120 crore for lease renewal, unpaid dues, and alleged illegal alterations on the plot.

The report further stated that in case the Association fails to pay the amount, they will have to hand over the prestigious stadium to the government. The Cricket Association will have to pay ₹120 crore by May 3.

In order to understand the issue, it is vital to understand the events that led to the trouble for MCA.

In 1975, S.K. Wankhede had decided to construct Wankhede Stadium after clash with the Cricket Club of India (CCI). Accordingly, the state government had provided the cricket association the land on lease for a period of 50 years.

However, the agreement ended in February last year after which, the cricket association was supposed to pay rent to the government as per new rates since the plot was also used to construct a Cricket Centre, which is currently Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)'s headquarters. Therefore, the government has directed MCA to pay the additional amount by May 3, 2019.

Reportedly, MCA has now approached Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and sent them a proposal to renew the agreement. Meanwhile, when asked by Mumbai Mirror, MCA CEO, CS Naik denied of any having knowledge about the collector's notice.

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