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JSW Group shelves plans to buy an IPL team

MUMBAI: The controversy over the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL) has made JSW Group think twice about buying a franchise.

JSW was looking to buy Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) from Diageo Plc in a $100 million deal.

“I think it’s a no at this point of time, purely based on the whole negative aura that has been generated. We don’t want our brand to be associated with a league that is so tainted at the moment,” Parth Jindal, the son of Sajjan Jindal who oversees the conglomerate’s sports interests, told Reuters.

Jindal was disturbed by the findings of Justice RM Lodha Committee report, which was appointed by the Supreme Court to probe into the IPL spot-fixing and betting scandal. The committe proposed a two-year suspension of Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Rajasthan Royals (RR) from participating in the IPL. It said that the betting activities of CSK’s Gurunath Meiyappan and RR’s Raj Kundra have brought the game to disrepute and bad name to BCCI.

Some corporates, however, have shown interest in bidding for another IPL team. Videocon Group, which sponsors the Mumbai Indians, has said that it spends big advertising money on branding and it would make sense for it to own a franchise if it comes at the right price. Chances are that there could be a new Ahmedabad team, which would make it lucrative for Gautam Adani of the Adani Group to bid.

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