IPL matches shifted out of Andhra Pradesh (Lead, changing dateline)By IANS
Saturday, February 13, 2010
HYDERABAD - Indian Premier League (IPL) supremo Lalit Modi tweeted Saturday that all Deccan Chargers’ games have been moved out of Andhra Pradesh due to political unrest over the Telangana issue.
Modi posted on the Twitter that all the seven matches, including the opening game, have been shifted out of Hyderabad and Vishakhapatnam. State capital Hyderabad was scheduled to host five matches and Vishakhapatnam two.
The opening match between defending champions Deccan Chargers and Kokata Knight Riders will now be held March 12 at the D.Y. Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai. Chargers will play their next three matches in Nagpur (March 19, 21, 28) and will return to D.Y. Patil for the remaining three league matches (April 5, 10, 12).
The move comes even after the state government assured top security for the Twenty20 extravaganza.
Andhra Pradesh Sports Minister K. Venkat Reddy said it was an insult to the state. Reddy has also appealed to Deccan Chargers to boycott the IPL.
“IPL has insulted Andhra Pradesh by shifting out the match to Mumbai. We request Sharad Pawar and Lalit Modi to reconsider the decision within 24 hours,” Venkat Reddy told reporters.
“Though we had assured full security, they decided to shift all matches. I see a conspiracy behind this,” he said.
“We have asked Deccan Chargers to stay away from the event as an expression of solidarity and send the message that the whole state is united in demanding relocation of the (inaugural) match,” he added.
However, sources in Deccan Chargers said the team has not received any official communication about shifting of the matches. They said the IPL had only shifted the opening match out of Hyderabad.
Chief Minister K. Rosaiah, the sports minister and the Joint Action Committee (JAC) that is spearheading Telangana agitation had earlier written to Board of Control for Cricket in India and IPL commissioner Modi to host the matches in Hyderabad as per the schedule and assured full security and cooperation.
The decision to pull out IPL matches from Andhra Pradesh comes as fresh protests eruptrf in Telangana Friday after the central government announced the terms of reference of the Srikrishna panel that is looking into the demand for a separate state.
Unhappy with the central government’s move, various pro-Telangana outfits had called for a shutdown Saturday in Telangana, which comprises Hyderabad and nine other districts.