Regulators

No interim court order on telecast issue

NEW DELHI: Delhi High Court today refused to pass any interim order in a case filed by Zee Telefilms against the Indian cricket board.

The case, filed last week, came up for hearing today where the judge refused to give any interim relief to any of the parties, setting the next date of hearing on 31 August.

Responding to Zee Telefilms' petition seeking the quashing of Board for Control of Cricket in India (BCCI)'s 'invitation to tender' (ITT) for telecast and broadcast rights for the next four years, the court had issued notices to the central government and the BCCI.

Today's developments could mean that the cricket board can accept the bids by interested parties for domestic cricket rights. The last date for submission of bid is 26 August and, according to information available, no broadcaster has yet submitted any quotes preferring to wait and watch the legal developments.

In its petition, Zee has alleged that the eligibility conditions were framed by the BCCI to oust bidders from India.

According to ZTL counsel Pratibha M Singh, the present set of eligibility conditions for ITT was framed by the BCCI in such a manner so as to try to "exclude" the petitioner and/or other Indian television channels and favour ESPN Star Sports.

BCCI had released tenders for the telecast of 120-130 days of cricket between October 2005 to September 2009 last week. The TV tender document contains a three-year experience clause, which effectively rules out Zee from making a bid.

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