Cricket lovers raise alarm over IPL ticket shortage

Blame cricket bodies, ticketing agency, seek state government’s intervention

Hyderabad: Cricket lovers who didn’t get tickets for the past two IPL matches held in Hyderabad, have accused local sport body Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA), Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRHO administrators and the ticketing agency PayTM of being non-transparent on the sale and distribution of tickets and complimentary passes.

There are only five more ‘home’ matches at the Uppal stadium.

Desperate cricket lovers, especially youngsters, wonder how tickets get sold out within minutes. According to reliable sources, tickets and complimentary passes are given to celebrities, government officials and influential personalities to shore up their relations or are sold through black market.

M. Pavala Kumar complained that the doors are closed for them but the back doors are always kept open for influential persons.

“It seems that getting an IPL ticket is even more difficult than getting a passport,” Pramod Kumar, another cricket lover, said. He said cricket fans are disappointed because neither HCA, SRH or PayTM are addressing the issue.

“We lost hope, as we did not get tickets for the past two matches. If the government does not look into the matter immediately, spectators like us and the general public will not get tickets for the next five matches,” Pramod said.

He believed that there was a lack of coordination between HCA and SRH and Paytm, which is the ticket issuing organisation, is taking advantage of internal conflicts at the cost of cricket lovers.

According to a former HCA member, HCA and IPL organisers used to disclose the details of the ticket sales but had stopped the practice.

Deepak Reddy says online tickets get sold out within 15 to 20 minutes on Paytm.

“Only influential persons get ticket passes delivered. Or else, they enter the ground by warming the hands of officials who issue tickets,” the sources said.

Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, former HCA secretary Shesh Narayan said, “I met Deputy Chief Minister Bhatti Vikramarka Mallu, along with MLA G. Vinod. We represented to him about the non-availability of tickets for the general public, and requested the government’s intervention.”

Bhatti said he wuuld discuss the issue with Chief Minister A. Revanth Reddy and resolve the issue, Narayan said. He also demanded that the government stop the sale of bulk tickets by HCA, SRH or PayTM.

“The sale of bulk tickets as corporate boxes is leading to a shortage of tickets. So the government should link the sale of tickets to Aadhaar cards,” Shesh Narayan said, adding that he requested the state government to conduct a judicial inquiry into the shortage of tickets.

HCA secretary Devraj said, “we have nothing to do with the sale of IPL tickets, it's SRH and PayTM that are involved. SRH gives us 3,900 tickets for every IPL match and we distribute them to the staff, selectors and some others. We do not sell the tickets.”

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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