In a unique recovery suit, Chandigarh police through the UT administration have moved court to recover pending security bills of more than `8 crore pending since 2010 from Kings XI Punjab and the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA).
Additional chief judicial magistrate KK Jain on Tuesday issued notice to officials of the PCA, owners of Kings XI Punjab Ness Wadia and Preity Zinta, along with the CEO and general manager of the team, to file reply by March 30.
The suit has been filed through the UT home secretary to recover pending dues for providing security to Kings XI Punjab as well other teams playing the Indian Premier League (IPL) at Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium in SAS Nagar from 2010 to 2012; and to the PCA during the World Cup matches in 2011.
UT police in March 2013 had written to the UT home department regarding recovery of a total amount of `8.92 crore for providing security to the IPL franchisee. However, despite repeated reminders no efforts have been made on the behalf of Kings XI management to clear the outstanding bills.
The audit report of 2012 had also raised an objection against the failure to recover the dues.
"The pending amount also includes charges of services sought by Kings XI Punjab. As serving reminders failed to serve the purpose, we have moved court to recover the dues pending since 2010," said RP Upadhyaya, inspector general of police (IGP), Chandigarh,.
'Maintaining law and order duty of police'
Commenting on the suit, PCA joint secretary GS Walia said, "The international matches held at the PCA stadium are public events. As such, maintaining law and order at the venue is the responsibility of the police. At the 2011 World Cup semi-final, PCA played host to Prime Ministers of both India and Pakistan. Besides, there were lots of VVIPs and VIPs, including cabinet ministers and governors, present at the venue. So security for them was provided as per protocol of the police."
"Moreover, we do inform police before an international match but never specifically ask for security. Besides, giving security cover to national teams is also responsibility of police so that no untoward incident happens. Anyway, I would be able to comment on the specifics only after receiving the notice," Walia added.
It may be mentioned that the police of Hyderabad and Mumbai too have filed suits in the court for recovery of fee for providing security during IPL matches.