Zee vs. BCCI case now with Delhi HC div. bench; DD lunges for Test & ODI rights at old rates

NEW DELHI: The cricket telecast rights saga just refuses to end with twists and turns greeting and frustrating people concerned. With a court case showing signs of a long inning, pubcaster Doordarshan has upped the ante seeking rights of three Test matches too, apart from one-dayers.

On a day when the Indian cricket board was expected to reveal in the Delhi High Court whether it found Zee Telefilms’ bid technically conforming to eligibility criteria, the case on Wednesday got transferred to another division bench on the request of the chief justice of the HC.

The case filed by Zee Telefilms, alleging discrimination by the Indian cricket board, will now be taken up afresh tomorrow just few days ahead of the beginning of Sri Lanka and South Africa’s India visit involving a series of cricket matches.

With the case highly unlikely to be resolved before the arrival of the Lankans and South Africans, pubcaster Prasar Bharati, managers of Doordarshan and All India Radio, might benefit, albeit by default.

Though Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)’s mind is not yet known officially as it has to convey its stand to the court, media reports few days back had hinted that Zee Telefilms’ chances of winning the bids under normal circumstances are slim.

BCCI had also sought legal opinion from former attorney-general Soli Sorabjee on the issue before preparing its stand for the Delhi HC, which has admitted a petition filed by Zee Telefilms.

The Marketing Committee of the Board would meet tomorrow to discuss the contentious issue of telecast rights and Sorabjee's opinion would be placed at the meeting.

The present bidders for telecast rights for matches to be organized by the BCCI in India include Zee, ESPN-Star Sports, Sony Entertainment Television India and pubcaster Prasar Bharati.

The present legal impasse is part of long drawn court cases first initiated by ESS and then Zee Telefilms after bids were first invited in 2004, which stand cancelled presently.

Meanwhile, BCCI today suggested former chief election commissioner T S Krishnamurthy as an observer to the Board elections before the Supreme Court.

Prasar Bharati makes a grab for test matches too

While the court case in the Delhi High Court is keeping many busy, including the media, Prasar Bharati is quietly angling for a bigger slice of the telecast cake in the interim --- the three five-day Tests --- realizing BCCI has few options.

“Apart from the one-dayers (to be played amongst Sri Lanka, South Africa and India), we would like to telecast the three Tests also. We have written to the BCCI in this regard today,” Prasar Bharati CEO KS Sarma told

According to Sarma, if the BCCI agrees to give Prasar Bharati the Tests also, it would be able to market the Test-ODI package better.

“However, BCCI has to inform us of its decision soon,” Sarma said, adding the cricket board has acknowledged an earlier communication on DD’s interest in airing the one-dayers, which hold better marketing prospects.

After the legal wrangling over telecast rights, which broke late 2004, DD has been telecasting BCCI-organised matches that include matches played by India against Australia, South Africa and Pakistan during 2005.

For the forthcoming series of cricket matches DD has offered to pay BCCI telecast rights fee at the rate of Rs. 70 million per one-dayer, which is the same amount as for the Indo-Pakistan series, and has said that it would not mind if the overseas rights were given to any other channel or marketing agency.

For the three five-day Test matches, DD has quoted a price of slightly over Rs 30 million per day.

“Though Test matches don’t get us that many eyeballs, we could try packaging them with the one-dayers,” Sarma said, adding, with his tongue firmly in cheek, that DD would bear financial losses, if any, in the “interest of the masses” that don’t have much access to cable TV.

Prasar Bharati has also reminded everybody concerned, including the BCCI, that as a pubcaster it should get preferential treatment vis-?-vis private sports broadcasters. This line seems to have been swallowed by some policy-makers who are suggesting a law mandating that all important sports content be shared with the pubcaster on a mandatory basis.

(Rs. 45.33 = $ 1)

Latest Reads
Times Television Network elevates Nivedita Oak to DGM

Times Television Network (TTN) has elevated Nivedita Oak to deputy general manager - influence. Earlier, Oak was the regional head for Zoom, FCT and branded content. She has been working with the Times Network for the last 11 years.

Television TV Channels People
History TV18 to release third film in ‘Special Operations India' series

History TV18, a pan-Indian television channel, is to create a documentary on counter-terrorist operation at Pathankot air base named Special Operations India: Pathankot. This one-hour documentary will be aired on June 25 at 9 pm.

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
CNBC-TV18 successfully concludes the 8th edition of the ‘India Healthcare and Wellness Awards 2018’

NBC-TV18, India’s leading English business news channel along with ICICI Lombard hosted the 8th edition of the ‘Indian Healthcare and Wellness Awards 2018’ at The Grand Hyatt, Mumbai.

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
MN+ to air Indian Television premier of ‘Tulip Fever’

MN+, the Gold Class of Hollywood Movies from the Times Network, brings to the viewers, for the first time on Indian television, the celebrated romantic historical saga– ‘Tulip Fever’. The movie will premiere on Sunday, 24th June at 1 pm and 9pm on MN+.

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
Sony Music acquires the music rights for 2018’s much awaited sports drama film ‘SOORMA’

Global music giant, Sony Music has acquired the music rights for Soorma – the greatest comeback story of the hockey legend Sandeep Singh.

Television TV Channels Music and Youth
Epic and Rupa publications announce the umeed india book on the occasion of international olympic day

EPIC TV - India’s only Hindi language, Indian Infotainment channel celebrates International Olympic Day with an exclusive unveiling of the first look of the Umeed India book published by Rupa Publications and based on its popular series, of the same name hosted by ace cricketer Virender Sehwag.

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Iconic series Blue Planet II set for Indian TV premiere on Sony BBC Earth after a successful theatrical run

All eyes on TV as India’s #1 factual entertainment channel, Sony BBC Earth, premieres the world-renowned, path breaking and breath-taking series Blue Planet II for the Indian audience on June 25th at 9 pm.

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
FOX Life celebrates a perfect celebrity mismatch in Great Escape’s new season

He’s rugged, she’s delicate. He’s adventurous, and she is spiritual. They are two friends who, at a distance, might seem like polar opposites. But get closer and you are sure to be surprised. FOX Life, India’s favorite premium lifestyle channel,

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Engaging viewers with diversified content, COLORS brings you investigative thriller - Dev2

He thinks like a criminal, is at home around a crime scene and possesses an ironclad will to rid the city of nefarious wrongdoers; Detective Dev Burman returns for an explosive second season on COLORS – India’s premium Hindi entertainment channel.

Television TV Channels GECs

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories