A Sorry Commentary- A Daylight Robbery Called The IPL


The caption above might be a misfit considering that most of the matches in the IPL(Indian Premier League), one the richest sports leagues in the world and the Board of Control for Cricket in India( BCCI)’s cash spewing monster( cash cow would be too tame a term) are played in the evenings from 7.30 pm onwards. But that is not important. I am here to rant about what must have dawned on a lot of people like me well before I am giving vent to my utter disgust and disillusionment.


Last evening, i.e the 25th March, courtesy the grace and kindness of my brother who booked premium seats, I had the opportunity to watch the IPL  match between between RCB and PBKS  at the over romanticized, over hyped, over sized backyard garden but (considered for a long long time good enough to hold international matches) cricket ground called the Chinnaswamy Stadium.


Having watched quite a few of the IPL games both in Bombay and Dubai, I had tempered expectations. My wife did not want to come but relented reluctantly. My uncle and aunt, on a holiday trip to Bangalore, were the others who made the fource. Tour de force would be more like it.


Irrespective of how you go to the stadium, by car, metro, auto, train, bus, foot, bended knees or whatever, getting in is the perfect inspiration for an ‘ against all odds documentary ‘. Unless of course you are considered the ‘ powers that be ‘, the select elite who have frictionless access and experience at every touch point at such so called hallowed venues.


Traffic cops( under motivated, under paid, over weight, over stressed, over worked) give you the get lost, why are you here glare within 500 metres of the stadium. And why not? The cost of one ticket that we had would be far more than the monthly salary they take home.


Neither the IPC(Indian Penal Code) nor the Constitution of India considers women or girls carrying hand bags a crime. As far as I know. The tickets issued for the match did not in anyway, anywhere mention that handbags are not allowed(Law abiding citizens don’t do all this. What will politicians do then? We can’t be upstaging them surely especially in election year). But, my aunt, my wife and several other ladies and young girls had the ignominy of being rudely told that you can’t go in with bags. And they provided an ‘easier‘ option- go out, walk another 500 metres, stand in line for another 45 minutes and deposit the bags at another gate and come back, rinse and repeat. Not to mention to be at the unwelcoming end of pushing, shoving and jostling because history has to repeat itself you see.


By this time, our enthusiasm was clearly turning into frustration, irritation and anger combined as we watched the absolute disregard and contempt of the authorities to the people who make the game ie the paying public. It was also a blatant exhibition of the absolute lack of coordination between the various stakeholders be it the IPL Organising Committee, the RCB franchise, the KSCA( landlords of the -for us atleast- infamous, grossly and hopelessly inadequate Chinnaswamy Stadium), local state police, the traffic cops, the on ground event coordinators and any|all stakeholders.


Somehow, having come to the end of our tether and found a good samaritan who understood our plight, we managed to get in after trading off a huge amount of dignity and self respect. Quid pro quo. Somehow the cricket buff in me still harbored hopes that the worst was over. But, we had another thing coming.


We discovered a new definition of premium seating- hard piles’ forming plastic chairs with the primary view facing the Jimmy Jib( camera mounted on a crane to get spectator shots) where you had to use Prabhudeva type of neck movements to watch the action on the ground. We realised later that we were in much better luck. We had another group of 6 who were in ‘ premium seating ‘ whose view was completely blocked by a suite of speakers belting the nonsense that the monster(read DJ gone wrong on barrels of adulterated Red Bull) whose only incentive was to pulverise the highest of decibels at its own game. I know it sounds gross and you bet it was!


Well, we have enough common sense not to expect Italian marble flooring at the stadiums especially in premium seating where ordinary mortals sink their hard working backsides but the floor there resembled as if a tsunami of garbage had just made a landing. Civic and civil sense made no sense. Can’t blame the paying public as there was zero provision for waste disposal of any kind as far as the eye could see. Waste disposal- ahh, what a waste, isn’t it KSCA| Chinnaswamy? Premium seating should be redefined as premium shitting.


Now premium seating would ensure that civility and basic decency would prevail- or so was the belief when we went in. Amidst families and kids, there were absolute hooligans( some of them unfortunately qualify to be fans of the franchise RCB) who after a couple of sponsor supplied beers, behaved as if they will outdo obnoxious English football fan behavior at all costs 8 days in a week and win hand over fist.


I saw kidney dialysis machines for the first time( sorry, just kidding). But I wouldn’t have been surprised had I seen some there. The washrooms were shit holes personified, literally. Dirty, unkempt, over crowded. So much so that most of the women and some of the men refused to use it. Bangalore’s water shortage was a willing ally to the well calibrated strategy of the powers that be of treating the paying public as ‘shit’.


The premium seating tickets came with food and beverage coupons served in the hospitality area(read Badminton Court of the KSCA)- there another racket ensued. A place which can accommodate at best 150-200 people was trying to feed and host ten times that number. But the net impact of this was that a lot of us learnt how to walk on biryani, trashed cans, disposable plates, garbage bags( yes I saw a few surprisingly) and plastic glasses among other things with aplomb. Alas, if we could have done likewise with our self respect and dignity!!


Stuffed with claustrophobia and disgust, we made our way back out of the stadium. That was our just desserts. Didn’t wait for DK and his histrionics. We had a different bitter experience.


Disappointed? Nah! Disillusioned, yes and how! I am aware that this rant will hardly make any dent in the vast universe of unabashed capitalism. Shame on you BCCI, IPL, IPL Governing Council, KSCA, RCB


I am not sure how Qatar Airways, the sponsor of the enclosure we were in( and Main Principal Partner of the RCB Team in the Indian Premier League) sees this from a branding lens. To me, this is worse than being next to acerbic content. And for an airline that has been an unprecedented seven-time winner of the “World’s Best Airline” voted by Skytrax (2011, 2012, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2021 and 2022).


Love for the game is fine but being tortured and blinded is not! Wake up. Our silence is deafening.




12 thoughts on “A Sorry Commentary- A Daylight Robbery Called The IPL”

  1. Yes absolutely right. We had one more bad experience. By the time we went for the food offered free along with the premium tickets, had exhausted and we were offered just simple yellow coloured (they called it rice) stuff with no gravy or any other thing to eat along with it. Finally we had to skip the the so called premium dinner.
    Are you collecting this huge amount through tickets to satisfy the needs of the few such as franchises and BCCI. I will very well define it as cheating. Do something immediately before the board starts loosing further Credibilities. Cricket is a sports and you have to be sportive too BCCI Enjoy your tax free income. But care the common man , without them you are nothing.

    1. Nothing short of a revolution can change this UM, being imbecile, mute and suppressive is not going to cut it

  2. Sheer commercialism at work. This will keep getting shittier as the years go by as long as the we the gullible rant and rave about the position of India in the world and the brute power it has managed to display. The ICC is bit a mere bit player as far as control of the game is concerned. The mooolah coming in will keep the genuine spectator disillusioned with the crap being served in the name of Cricket.

  3. Going to a ground in India has always been like this. No matter how much money comes in this sorry state of affairs is unlikely to change. Poor crowd management, selling more tickets than what the ground can handle, non existent washroom facilities, lack of any organized f&b counters will always be the order of the day no matter how much money comes into the game. The super VVIP boxes are the only ones who can watch the game with some dignity. Rest is just cattle class ….
    Contrast this with the football stadium experience in massive grounds like Nou Camp and you will know how third world we still are as far as sporting events go …

    1. Thanks Rupam, and we were supposed to be in Premium Seating in the Qatar Airways Hospitality Box. It was indeed a flight of disgusting fancy!

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