No electricity in IND vs AUS 4th T20 venue due to unpaid bill since 2009
The 4th T20 match between India and Australia is scheduled to take place today (December 1) at Raipur's Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh stadium. However, with just hours remaining before this crucial encounter, some sections of the stadium are experiencing a power outage due to an unpaid electricity bill dating back to 2009.
The stadium currently carries an outstanding bill of ₹3.16 crore, leading to the disconnection of its electricity supply five years ago. A temporary connection was subsequently installed upon the request of the Chhattisgarh State Cricket Association, but this only caters to the spectators' gallery and boxes. Consequently, the floodlights required for today's match will have to be powered by a generator.
In 2018, a controversy erupted when athletes participating in a half-marathon discovered a lack of electricity supply at the stadium. It was then revealed that the outstanding electricity bill, amounting to ₹3.16 crore had not been settled since 2009.
Following the stadium's construction, its maintenance was entrusted to the Public Works Department (PWD) while the remaining expenses were designated for the Sports Department.
Blame game between different government organizations reason behind unpaid bill
The two departments have consistently shifted blame onto each other regarding the unpaid power bill.
Despite receiving multiple notices from the electricity company, both the PWD and the Sports Department have failed to clear the outstanding dues.
Since the power connection was severed in 2018, three international cricket matches have been organized at the stadium. The Chhattisgarh State Cricket Sangh (CSCS), the current manager of the stadium, asserts that they do not owe any outstanding payments to the electricity department.
"We can't comment on the previous dues of the department that the stadium was under prior to CSCS coming in. That connection where dues maybe there was in the name of the relevant government department," said Jubin Shah, President-CSCS.