Mumbai: Bollywood actress and Rajasthan Royals co-owner Shilpa Shetty on Thursday said the BCCI should have treated them with "little more fairness" before taking the decision to terminate the franchise and made it clear that they are ready to face any enquiry in this regard.
A distressed Shilpa, who ownes Indian Premier League`s first edition`s champion Rajasthan team along with husband Raj Kundra, questioned the BCCI`s move and said they would be more than happy to know if there was any mistake on their part.
"We don`t want to hurl stones and have not done something wrong. Even if we have done something wrong, I think, as a franchise... the passion we have done it with, we need to be treated with a little more fairness," Shilpa said.
"In any business if you have defaulted, you have to pay for that and compensate. Just throwing us is not a solution. If we have irked (anyone), we are willing to face the consequences. But you can`t just cancel us out," Shilpa told a news channel.
Royals, along with Kings XI Punjab, was expelled from the IPL last Sunday for alleged violations of rules, with seven years of their 10-year contract still to go.
Shilpa also demanded a fair probe into the whole incident and said they would extend every help in this regard.
"There has to be a transparent enquiry. We will be more than happy to do all it takes to help the ED (Enforcement Directorate) to come up with a solution. So we are not running away from that. We have invested so much time, money and passion to bring the brand upto a certain level.”
"We have a lot of respect for BCCI, they are a charitable institution, the members are doing their best for cricket. But we also don`t want our brand to be affected," she said.
Asked about the alleged irregularities in their ownership pattern, Shilpa said that the BCCI was fully aware about her husband Raj Kundra`s introduction into the franchise.
"When you buy into a team, five per cent of the money goes to the BCCI and they have accepted Raj`s money. And if there was a problem with the owner, why would they accept the money?" she asked.
"Why this question is coming up after two years?"
The actor said that they had already discussed the matter with the Board but chose not to reveal any detail.
"We had our dialogue directly with the BCCI and we like it to be private. We are shocked and taken aback with the whole fiasco that has happened with us," said Shilpa, who tweeted earlier today to express her feelings.
She also said that the Shane Warne-led side has nothing to do with suspended IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi.
"As far as we are concerned Modi has nothing to do with the Royals, his only connection is Suresh Chellaram (one of the RR owners). He is a successful businessman and why should we have doubt about him?" asked Shilpa.
The next in BCCI`s firing line could be the IPL`s new Kochi franchise, which has asked for some more time from the cricket body to sort out its ownership issues.
Earlier, Shilpa had tweeted that she was distressed by the BCCI`s decision to terminate the franchise and wants a "fair and balanced" inquiry into the allegations of irregular ownership pattern of her IPL team.
"Its been a very distressing time for us all at RR after al we`ve put in (passion n time)," Shetty said in her tweets.
"The only change to ownership was the introduction of my husband Raj Kundra, for which we had full BCCI permission and support at the time.”
"All we ask is 4 a fair n balanced hearin on issues raisd, givn d adverse national n intnl impact on "Brand IPL"in d interests of fans n teams," she tweeted.