In a surprising turn of events just hours before the much-anticipated fourth T20 international clash between India and Australia at Raipur’s Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh Stadium, darkness looms over parts of the venue due to a longstanding financial dispute. The cause of the unexpected blackout? An unpaid electricity bill dating back to 2009, accumulating to a staggering ₹3.16 crore.
The electricity connection at the stadium was severed five years ago due to the unpaid bills, forcing the Chhattisgarh State Cricket Association to resort to a temporary connection to illuminate the spectators’ gallery and boxes. The crucial floodlights, essential for hosting international cricket matches, are now reliant on generators, adding an unusual twist to this already intriguing encounter.
Raipur Rural Circle in-charge, Ashok Khandelwal, disclosed that an application to upgrade the temporary connection’s capacity from 200 KV to 1 thousand KV has been approved, but progress on the matter is yet to begin. The uncertainty surrounding the electricity predicament has raised concerns about the future of hosting international matches at the venue.
Chhattisgarh State Cricket Sangh media coordinator, Tarunesh Singh Parihar, expressed skepticism about the feasibility of hosting future international matches due to the ongoing electricity struggle. For major matches, the association relies on generators as an alternative, sparking worries about the overall matchday experience.
“As far as the stadium lights are concerned, I don’t know how much bill is outstanding, but a temporary connection has been taken in the name of CSCS,” Mr. Parihar commented, shedding light on the association’s efforts to find makeshift solutions amid the ongoing power struggle.
As cricket enthusiasts eagerly await the clash between India and Australia, the unexpected electricity hurdles add an element of unpredictability to the matchday experience. With the stadium’s future as an international cricket venue hanging in the balance, the Chhattisgarh State Cricket Association finds itself caught in the crossfire of financial disputes and cricketing aspirations.