The International Cricket Council today barred Indian television news channels from covering the World Cup final between India and Sri Lanka in Mumbai on Saturday, accusing them of breaching the accreditation guidelines.
Representatives of the channels, who had come to attend the pre-match press conferences of the rival captions and ICC President Sharad Pawar were asked to stay out of the Wankhede stadium complex.
Despite marathon negotiations to resolve the matter on Thursday night, the News Broadcasters' Association (NBA) and the ICC could not reach an agreement on terms of coverage.
The TV channels, who had faced a similar ban ahead of the semifinal between India and Pakistan in Mohali before the information and broadcasting ministry stepped in to help their cause, were on Friday barred from the pre-match media conference of both Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Kumar Sangakkara.
During the Mohali match, the ICC officials had allowed only those channels who were not in the banned list to enter the stadium while others had to report from outside the venue.
As a result, there were hordes of reporters from the print media but only a handful of television cameras at the press conference.
The Broadcast Editors' Association (BEA) and the National Broadcasters Association (NBA) had then approached the Information and Broadcasting (I&B) ministry on the matter.
ICC has accused channels of a number of broadcast violations during the entire tournament and the game's governing body has repeatedly brought it to the notice of the offenders. Despite the warning, they continued to breach the guidelines, prompting the ICC to take stern action.