Bombay HC orders clarity in TV rights

The issue of broadcast rights deals came up before court when MSM (Singapore) sought an injunction restraining WSG (Mauritius) from proceeding with arbitration in Singapore.

MSM filed a case in Bombay High Court, seeking refund of facilitation fee of Rs 125 crore which it paid to WSG for IPL media rights in 2009. MSM alleges that WSG never possessed media rights in the first place, as later confirmed by BCCI. WSG’s contended that as per facilitation agreement, all disputes should be resolved through arbitration.

However, a division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice SC Dharmadhikari rejected WSG’s case, and restrained it from continuing with arbitration last week. The court noted that IPL derived media rights from BCCI and it was not a party to arbitration in Singapore.

“Ultimately, how television rights are dealt with by BCCI and who are the beneficiaries of the deals of BCCI and whether the officers of BCCI had any involvement therein are matters which must be known to the cricketing public,” the judges said.

“They will be known only if there is no confidentiality in the trial,” the High Court said.

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