Rajasthan Royals' [ Images ] co-owner Raj Kundra [ Images ] came down hard on the Board of Control for Cricket in India over its handling of the Indian Premier League [ Images ], saying recent controversies are a "dampener" for the cash-rich tournament.
"I am satisfied with the way the league has gone in the last five years, but the controversies have been a damper," he said, in Mumbai [ Images ], on Monday.
Controversy has been an integral part of the Twenty20 [ Images ] league ever since former chairman Lalit Modi [ Images ] was sacked for alleged financial wrongdoings in April 2010. In the same year, Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab [ Images ] were axed from the IPL but reinstated following a Supreme Court order. Kochi Tuskers Kerala [ Images ], however, were not so lucky and ousted after just one season.
Earlier this month fresh controversy emerged after the cash-strapped Deccan Chargers [ Images ] was axed from the league, and it dragged the BCCI to court.
British-born businessman Kundra, who along with wife Shilpa (Shetty) had bought stake in Rajasthan Royals in 2009, said the IPL, which is hugely popular throughout the world, is a good platform to promote Indian cricketers.
"We are trying to push Indian cricketers forward through the IPL and giving them an opportunity to showcase their talent.
"Lalit Modi created such a good property -- the Indian Premier League -- which has become a huge hit and we don't need to spoil it. The controversies like fixing, court cases and other such things are proving to be a dampener, but the BCCI is trying its best to resolve all the issues," he said at a function, where Olympic bronze medallist MC Mary Kom was named brand ambassador of Super Fight League, India's first professionally-organised mixed martial arts fighting tournament.
"I want to change the colour of my medal in Rio. I have heard the AIBA is planning to include six weight categories for women at the Rio Games. We had just three at the London [ Images ] Games so I was forced to change my weight category. If there is 48-kg category at the Rio Olympics [ Images ], I am sure I will win gold medal," she said.
Photograph: Pradeep Bandekar