The Board of Control for Cricket in India could suffer a financial loss to the tune of Rs 1600 crore if the Justice Lodha panel's recommendations on curtailing advertisement breaks during the matches is implemented.
It is feared that in the wake of loss of revenue not only will the smooth functioning of country's richest sporting body be hit but also development of junior cricket.
According to the BCCI's balance sheet, the operative revenue currently is approximately Rs 2000 crore, a large chunk of which comes from broadcasting rights and advertisement revenue.
But if the Lodha panel's recommendation, which wants advertisements only during "lunch, tea or drinks break", is implemented then it will come down to Rs 400 crore.
According to a reliable source in the board, Star Sports, which holds the broadcasting rights for BCCI's matches, currently gives Rs 43 crore per match. Such a rule could see the BCCI earning as less as Rs 8-10 crore per match.
"Yes, it is true that we are facing a situation which could lead to a revenue loss of Rs 1600 crore. Star Sports will renegotiate their deal and may be pay us only 20-25 percent of the amount that we get currently per match. Ditto for IPL broadcasters," a source in the know of things said on conditions of anonymity.
The far-reaching implication of this could mean that during India's away tours, hosts countries like England, New Zealand or Australia will earn more than India out of the broadcast deals.
According to insiders, there are chances that the BCCI's age-group structure, which is one of the most robust in world cricket, will be badly hit if this recommendation comes into effect.
The BCCI spends around Rs 750 crore approximately on subsidies to state associations, Rs 400-450 crore (approx) on match-fees and allowances of players right from Under-16 to the senior teams.
Save this, another Rs 350 crore (approx) is spent to conduct around 2000 BCCI matches from Uner-16, Under-19, Under-22 to Ranji Trophy across the country.
Former first-class cricketers and international cricketers get monthly pension for which another Rs 25 crore is spent by the board.
When the BCCI source was asked about the implications of a possible hit in the revenue structure, he replied, "The biggest hit could be the age-group matches, Under-16, Under-19s and the various camps that are organised. The money generated through IPL and international broadcasting rights is used for development of junior cricket which will not be possible then."