23 March 2017 last updated at 13:18 GMT
 
LKM Blogs
Lalit Modi on 10 years of IPL
Outlook Magazine

Lalit Kumar Modi launched the IPL with a Rs 200-crore budget in 2008. After the frenetic start, he has missed the last six editions due to his expulsion from the BCCI in 2010 for ­“financial misdemeanors”. On the eve of the 10th ­edition, Modi, 53, spoke to Qaiser Mohammad Ali from London.


Please describe your feelings as the landmark 10th IPL is about to start?

 

There is a great sense of pride, when I look back, that India owns the greatest cricket league ever in history. I feel proud that the world has followed the Indian Premier League formula to churn out an industry of sports leagues across the globe.

It is 10 years since the first edition [in 2008] and today IPL is an annual ritual, a festival of India. An event that the whole nation as one embraces, watches, and together they rejoice and celebrate. What else can I ever dream of. It was my dream to create something that binds our nation together. Sitting here [in London] today I am the most proud ‘father’ of seeing my ‘baby’ having grown up and doing just that despite the numerous controversies, which we all go through. But in the end when IPL begins, one forgets all the worries and the nation comes together as one. It's something no one can take away from me and it's something I truly cherish wherever I am. IPL is India – India is IPL. It's the only one event in our country’s calendar that is able to do just that – it binds us together for months. Everywhere I go, everyone, I see always has the highest praises for the tournament and is always grateful for this creation. And I, for my part, am grateful to Mr. Sharad Pawar [then president of BCCI] who allowed me to fulfill my dream despite one and all saying it would never work or sustain itself. I take pride that in 10 years the formula I created with the IPL is even today considered to be the most progressive event ever created from scratch in the 21st century globally. To be able to make a place in the hearts of over a billion Indians and many millions across the globe is truly the greatest achievement of my life.

Along with that joy is a tinge of sadness that the people who took over from me have not been able to take IPL to the heights it has the potential to reach. They have stripped away, one by one, the ideals I had instilled at the core of the IPL. I am glad that those days too are over and a new breed of men and women will now enter into the BCCI and in years to come they will propel IPL to even greater heights.

IPL will run for another 100 years, and I do believe it will be the only event in our nation that would bring us all together over the longest period in the calendar.

 

How do view the BCCI’s decision to have individual opening ceremonies at all eight venues? And would you have done it any different had you been guiding the IPL now?

 

I think it is a half-baked idea and one that takes away from the entire concept of opening ceremonies. You can have events at all the venues for the opening games but to label them as opening ceremonies will cause fatigue for the television audience.

 

What we need is a commitment that we will put the fans and players at the forefront. If anything, there should be a thanksgiving to these two stakeholders. We have not done enough as yet for them, especially the fans, because they are what they make the sport what it is and force the hands of potential sponsors.

 

I have always envisioned a day when the IPL is played across the globe and we have five IPL matches across the five continents on the same day starting with Australia and move across to India, Asia, Europe, Africa and then end in the USA. Imagine the impact of an IPL opening day on the world.


Do you feel you would have made the IPL more attractive and much more successful had you been associated all through its 10 editions?


IPL is not going anywhere. It was always ahead of its time. We need to reclaim that space and ensure that we are able to go to the next level with the tournament. What that level is can be defined by what kind of innovations we are able to bring into the tournament. IPL needs to set the trend that others follow. We did that in 2008 and today we have a number of similar sounding products. Unfortunately, we have not innovated enough whether in terms of technology or rules to make the sport more interesting. I have always dreamt of a longer IPL season like the English Premier League or the Champions League. The injuries, change of players who have to go for national duty will make the league stronger and be more beneficial for the players, franchisees, advertisers and broadcasters. In 2010, we pushed the envelope and shred it to bits -- there was IPL in 3D, on YouTube, streaming on every mobile device, apps, IPL gaming, IPL in cinemas.


What all would you point out as the highlights of the nine IPL editions held so far?


My heart swelled with pride when India told the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in 2014 that the IPL’s success embodies emergence of sports as a global industry. India's UN Mission praised the IPL was India's most profitable and popular sporting league and had generated employment and revenues for upcoming athletes, players, sporting associations, companies and all stakeholders. To get that praise from your own country at the UN General Assembly is the ultimate achievement for anyone.

There were so many that it could easily flow into a couple of volumes but let me pick out the best of the best.

  1. The 158 from the bat of Brendon McCullum in the first ever IPL match would be a favourite. In my mind, he played a significant role in making IPL a household name. That very day I had dedicated the success of IPL to Brendon. I went up to him in the locker room and hugged him and said ‘Thank you, and I dedicate the IPL to you. You alone on its very first day have put is on the map’. It was a dream I was not expecting -- but it happened. It worked like clockwork.
  2. Moving the 2009 IPL to South Africa in 29 days and watching packed grounds for all the weeks of the tournament would be easily one of the toughest but one of the most satisfying moments of my life. The shift was an act of boldness, audacity, and implementation. It was the IPL's way of declaring its independence. I am so thankful today that the government did not allow us to play in India -- and once again against all odds not only did I move the whole tournament to South Africa, but made it a sell out in that country and back home drew in even larger fan base and made IPL truly a global product. It is something that is being talked about even today, in every business case study in leading universities around the world. Columbia and Stanford University have done two case studies on how I built and sustained IPL even with a hostile government at that time. To me, that was one of my biggest challenges I had faced and once again the Gods up there had their blessings in us.
  3. To be celebrated as the biggest Indian innovations of this century by the Business Today magazine was another highlight.
  4. Case Studies were discussed at Columbia and Stanford University.
  5. Getting YouTube to live stream all the matches of the 2010 edition – a first for Google – was a proud moment given they had never done any event on that scale ever.
  6. To take on the well-established primetime shows and get ratings higher than them was the testimony of getting the recipe correct across the country.
  7. Lastly, and most importantly, to change the lives of domestic cricketers and bring them to the centre stage; improve their financial conditions is the most satisfying accomplishments of my life. How a single IPL contract changed the lives of the domestic cricketer who would have otherwise finished his career without being acknowledged for his talent and hard work is truly the single most important achievement of the IPL.

What does the future hold for IPL, especially vis-à-vis troubled times that the BCCI is having for the last three years or so?


The ideals I had instilled at the core of the IPL are being stripped away one by one. The ideals of value and wealth creation for all stakeholders at all times are gone. The ideals of purity of brand are gone. The ideal of putting the customer first is gone, brushed aside by petty men looking for their moment in the sun. In its place is a new paradigm, a new tenet -- the creation of wealth for the very few by the very many. Is it a wonder then that it has faltered? Is it surprising, when you compromise the interests of the league, of the sport itself, that today you are threatened by copycat leagues?

These leagues, all based on the model I had pioneered, are fighting for the same eyeballs as the IPL. And even as the IPL has diminished, shrunk, these other leagues are growing. The pro-kabaddi league was watched by 435 million viewers. The Indian Soccer League was watched by 429 million. Similar leagues have sprung up around hockey, around badminton, and they are rapidly gaining attention, developing traction. The HIL, the IBL, the IPTL, an entire alphabet soup of rivals, all flourishing because the IPL lost sight of its ideals, its charter.

I have a lot of faith and belief in the reforms suggested by the Lodha Committee appointed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court and I have little doubt that they will retain the integrity of the league. But the IPL still needs innovation and ambition -- those two factors will determine the future success of the IPL. In the end, I have just three words to the new team – innovate, innovate, innovate in everything you do -- and if they can follow them then there will be no looking back. Like I say to my team in everything I do today – ‘surprise me’.

JAI HIND 🙏

http://www.outlookindia.com/magazine/story/ipl-was-always-ahead-of-its-time/298613

 

Lalit Kumar Modi

Proud Father of INDIAN PREMIER LEAGUE

FOUNDER AND ARCHITECT – IPL 

 

Indian Cricket's Moment of Truth

Honourable Supreme Court of India has given the perfect New Years’ gift to all cricket fans in India. In my view they have set a new benchmark in the way cricket and indeed sport will be governed for ages to come.

There comes a time in every era when a landmark change happens which leaves a long lasting impact in every sector.  In terms of India as a country, we saw that change being created first in 1991 when the economy was opened up and then in 2016 when the demonetisation of currency was implemented.

When it comes to sport, this landmark judgement by the Supreme Court on 2 January 2016 will be one that will be spoken for a long time to come. Till now change was only in the air and there was no sense of fear of it actually happening.

Now with the BCCI president and secretary being knocked out in one stroke, there is a sense of fear which is good in a way. There is a sense that the changes will actually happen because an exemplary punishment has been meted out. For a very long time there was a tendency to take things for granted, in true Indian style. With visible obstacles being removed, the Supreme Court has made it known that the changes have to be implemented.

Usually changes which create a new era always come at a slow pace. In this case, it has taken us close to three years to arrive at this scenario. What started as a fight against corruption, went a long way in making corrective changes to the opaque set-up. This is all the mishandling of a perfect scenario that had been created under the leadership of Shri Sharad Pawar.

Just about 10 years ago an able team under Shri Pawar set about changing the face of Indian cricket. We had experts in every field handling departments and then were held accountable for our actions. I was entrusted with setting up the IPL, which I did thanks to the free hand given by Shri Pawar. Our endeavour was always to bring in professionals to supplement the work done by committed set of office-bearers. What that resulted in was a long-term impact on how the world saw the product of cricket. This would not have been possible without division of labour, great tactical and commercial acumen coupled with the work put in by able professionals.

But over the last five years there has been a consistent attempt to completely derail the process that we had created. It is the greed, the lust of power and nepotism which has brought us to this stage in Indian cricket. The stupendous work done by the past presidents like Pawarjee, Mr IS Bindra, Mr Shashank Manohar, Mr Raj Singh Dungarpur and Mr AC Muttiah has all gone in vain. Today the founding fathers of our great organisation will be left wounded in every way possible. This was a completely self-inflicted wound especially by Mr Thakur and Mr Shirke. Mr Thakur chose to become the fall guy, maybe hoping to get praises from his mentor. I cannot believe how he let the situation come to this pass. It showed a complete lack of respect for judicial process and for all attempts to achieve transparency.

I still cannot fathom how anyone can still oppose reforms that can yield more benefits for the game that we all love. What everyone forgets is that the game is bigger than any individual. Legends of the game like Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Kapil Dev and Sunil Gavaskar have all come and gone. But that has not stopped the game from growing further. The sport has grown and added more players to the roster not because of some self-serving officials. They have all come about because of a number of committed coaches, players and various volunteers who have given their sweat and blood to this sport. I cannot believe that this was forgotten in the melee of wanting to retain control.

That itself should be a cue to the next set of office-bearers, the word Control needs to be weeded out from the nomenclature. The administration needs to be further professionalised, with the CEO’s team being strengthened with field experts being appointed. Similarly there can be an attempt to make IPL a truly professional blue-chip company to make it more accountable.

I am glad that there is at least a clear roadmap for us going forward. Now it is upto all of us stakeholders to pick up the thread and get the changes implemented.

 

 

Follow my thoughts on the BCCI crisis through my Twitter account @lalitkmodi

 

 

  LALIT MODI STATEMENT ON RCA ISSUE

Mr. Lalit Modi President of Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) has welcomed the amicable solution of the stalemate in RCA management. In a statement issued here Lalit Modi has expressed satisfaction that good sense prevailed amongst constituent members and all differences have been buried. The time that was wasted could have been put to valuable use for betterment of cricket. I have a vision for Rajasthan Cricket Association both for infrastructure development as well as cricketing activities in the state which I would accomplish with the full support of the association. 

With regard to the pending issues with BCCI the statement said that since the people holding responsible positions in BCCI are sensitive to the needs of cricket and young cricketers we look forward to an amicable resolution of all issues.

 

ON CHRIS CAIRNS ISSUE

I am aware of the verdict at Southwark Crown Court. As you know I am limited in what I can say as I am restricted by the injunction put in place following the 2012 libel trial. I will consider how this affects my own civil claim against Mr Cairns in due course.

 

 

 

FOR THE MISINFORMED MEDIA 

OPINION OF HON'BLE MR  JUSTICE SINHA (RETRD)

STATUS ON 16 SHOW CAUSE NOTICES : ALL COMPLETELY REPLIED

 

 

1. SHOW CAUSE NOTICE ON INTERNATIONAL MANAGEMENT GROUP (IMG) ISSUE

2. 11 SHOW CAUSE NOTICES ON SOUTH AFRICA ISSUE

3. SHOW CAUSE NOTICE ON PLAYERS ISSUE

42 SHOW CAUSE NOTICES ON PERFORMANCE DEPOSIT ISSUE

5. SHOW CAUSE NOTICE ON SONY ISSUE

Note:

1. In 2010, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) started various investigations pertaining to BCCI- IPL. After investigations, the ED issued 16 show cause notices (SCN) on merit - 1 show cause notice on IMG contract issue, 11 SCN on conduct of IPL 2 in South Africa, 1 show cause notice on giving of guarantees to foreign players, 2 SCN on acceptance of performance deposit from foreign bidders, and 1 show cause notice on IPL Media Rights issue.

2. Mr. Lalit Kumar Modi has filed his reply on merits to each of the SCN issued by the ED.

3. On merits, in none of the SCN issued by the ED, any personal misdemeanor of Mr. Lalit Modi was found. Rather, Mr. Modi has been arrayed as a co-noticee with the aid of Section 42 of FEMA, which provides for vicarious liability merely because he was Chairman of IPL . 

4. In those investigations, it was apparent that  Mr. Modi had no financial powers or cheque signing powers,  which vested with the Secretary and Treasurer of BCCI, and  had no role to play in any outward remittance. Consequently, no foreign exchange violation has been done by Mr. Modi.

5.    In effect, the ED has found that the responsibility in BCCI was collective rather than individual and the allegation made by BCCI that Mr Modi was acting without authority was not true and in effect discarded by the ED.

6.    The copy of  show cause notices on IMG issue, SA issue, players issue, performance deposit issue, and Sony issue are annexed as Annexure 1 to 5 respectively. The copies of replies of Mr. Modi to these notices are annexed as Annexure 6 to 10 respectively.

7.    The  brief tabular form of the various SCN issued by the ED are set out as under:

Sr. No.

Complaint upon which the show cause notice was based 

Show cause notice

Role of Mr. Modi 

Whether response filed

Status 

1.    

A complaint was filed on 13.7.2011 alleging that BCCI had hired IMG, an international sports marketing agency as consultant for IPL and this was done without approval of RBI.

Based on this complaint, 1 showcause notice dated 20.7.2011 was issued to BCCI, Mr. N. Srinivasan, the Secretary BCCI, Mr. MP Pandove, Treasurer BCCI, and Mr. Modi. 

Mr. Modi has been issued notice only under Section 42 (1) of FEMA, which provides for vicarious liability.

The BCCI has filed a detailed response to the show cause notice denying  the allegations made therein. Mr. Modi has separately filed a reply denying the allegations and that Section 42 (1) does not apply to him. 

Pending adjudication 

2.    

A complaint was filed on 17.11.2011 alleging that BCCI held the 2ndseason of IPL in South Africa and this was done without approval of RBI.

11 SCN dated 25.11.2011 were issued against the BCCI on a single complaint pertaining to each forex transaction in South Africa. Mr. Shashank Manohar, the President BCCI, Mr. N. Srinivasan, the Secy. BCCI, Mr. M.P. Pandove, the Treasurer, Mr. Ratnakar Shetty, CEO, BCCI, Mr. Prassanna Kanan, the Manager, Business and Commercial Services, IPL, Mr. Sunder Raman, COO, IPL and  Mr. Modi are co-noticees.

The notice has been issued to Mr. Modi under Section 42 (1) of FEMA providing for vicarious liability.

The BCCI has filed a detailed response to the show cause notice denying  the allegations made therein. Mr. Modi has separately filed a reply stating that he had no role at all to play in the forex transactions and that Section 42 (1) does not apply to him.

Pending adjudication 

3.    

A complaint was filed on 16.2.2012 alleging that BCCI gave guarantees to foreign players participating in IPL without permission of RBI.

1 show cause notice was issued on 21.2.2012 to the BCCI, Mr. Niranjan Shah, the then Secretary, and Mr. Modi.

The notice has been issued to  Mr. Modi under Section 42 (1) of FEMA providing for vicarious liability

The BCCI has filed a detailed response to the show cause notice denying  the allegations made therein. Mr. Modi has separately filed a reply denying the allegations and that Section 42 (1) does not apply to him.

Pending adjudication 

4.    

A complaint dated 22.8.2012 was filed that BCCI while awarding contracts to foreign bidders accepted performance deposit/earnest money in foreign currency without seeking RBI approval. 

On 23.8.2012, SCN were issued to the BCCI, Mr. N. Srinivasan, Mr. Niranjan Shah, and Mr. Modi. 

The notice has been issued to Mr. Modi under Section 42 (1) of FEMA providing for vicarious liability.

Mr. Modi has filed a reply denying the allegations and that Section 42 (1) does not apply to him.

Pending adjudication

5.    

A complaint dated 19.1.2015 was filed that BCCI while awarding contract to Sony had guaranteed payment of fees to WSG. 

On 11.2.2015, show cause notice was issued to the BCCI, Mr. N. Srinivasan, Mr. Sundar Raman, and Mr. Modi as well as WSG and Sony and their directors.

The notice has been issued to Mr. Modi under Section 42 of FEMA providing for vicarious liability.

Mr. Modi has filed a reply denying the allegations and that Section 42 does not apply to him.

Pending adjudication

 

WATCH LALIT MODI'S INTERVIEW WITH RAJDEEP SARDESAI  

 READ: MODI'S OPEN LETTER TO THE MEDIA

READ: LALIT MODI INTERVIEW IN THE OPEN MAGAZINE

QUIZ: HOW WELL DO YOU KNOW LALIT MODI?

BUZZFEED: LALIT MODI'S ACHIEVEMENTS

MEET N SRINIVASAN: THE MOST CORRUPT BCCI PRESIDENT EVER

 

 

Follow my thoughts on the BCCI crisis through my Twitter account @lalitkmodi
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