New Delhi: Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Friday that the government will not provide potable water for Indian Premier League (IPL) matches in the state.
“Our Govt has taken strong position in HC.We said we will not provide potable water for IPL matches,” he said.
The Maharashtra CM also said that he is not worried if the IPL matches are shifted out of the state due to water shortage. On Thursday the Bombay High Court had allowed with the proceedings of the inaugural match to be held on Saturday even as hearing on a petition demanding the tournament to be shifted continues.
"Water is more important for us than cricket. So, even if the cricket matches are shifted out of Maharashtra, I don't mind," Fadnavis said.
Meanwhile, IPL chairman Rajiv Shukla had already ruled out shifting the matches out of Maharashtra on account of the drought and water scarcity.
On Thursday the court had asked the government to give a detailed reply by April 12. It has also asked the organisers to hold a meeting and take decision on other matches to be held in Maharashtra
Several districts of Maharashtra are facing acute water shortage and objections have been raised over the "wastage" of water to maintain cricket grounds across the state.
Earlier, the High Court had reprimanded MCA for the many litres of water it will use to prepare pitches for the world's richest cricket tournament at a time when large parts of the state are reeling under drought.
Petitions have been filed against hosting the Indian Premier League in the state at a time when people are finding it tough to arrange water even for their daily needs.
The IPL T20 tournament is set to begin from April 9 with the first match between Mumbai Indians and Rising Pune Supergiants to be played at Mumbai's Wankhede Stadium.
A total of 20 matches will be played across the state in Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur.