The Eden Gardens has been offered to the Mamata Banerjee government to set up temporary quarantine facilities. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Sourav Ganguly, the head of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), has offered the Eden Gardens' indoor facilities and the player dormitory to the Mamata Banerjee government in West Bengal to set up temporary coronavirus quarantine facilities as the number of cases in India goes past 500. On Tuesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a total lockdown of India for 21 days in order to combat the coronavirus pandemic that has claimed close to 19,000 lives in the world and has resulted in the postponment of several marquee sporting events including Euro 2020 football and the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The West Bengal government announced that Kolkata and all other municipal and district towns under a complete lockdown from 5 PM on Monday till midnight of March 31 and it was given under the West Bengal Epidemic Disease COVID-19 regulations, 2020, framed according to relevant sections of the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897. However, on Tuesday, the lockdown of India has been extended to April 14.
Sourav Ganguly has said the fate of IPL 2020 is uncertain due to the coronavirus pandemic. (Image credit: Getty Images)
Speaking to PTI, Ganguly said the BCCI was ready to help both the state and central governments in order to combat the coronavirus pandemic. "If government asks us, we will certainly hand over the facility. Anything that is need of the hour, we will do it. There is absolutely no problem. I think this is the best option at the current moment. Certain things are beyond anybody’s control. Whatever directives that the government and ministry of health gives us, we have to follow. That’s the case all over the world," Ganguly said.
Ganguly has admitted to the helplessness of the situation and said nothing has changed as they hope against hope in trying to host IPL 2020 in entirety. "I can't say anything at the moment. We are at the same place where we were on the day we postponed. Nothing has changed in the last 10 days. So, I don't have an answer to it. Status quo remains," Ganguly said.
Kings XI Punjab co-owner Ness Wadia has said a postponment was on the cards looking at the situation regarding the coronavirus pandemic. "The BCCI should really consider postponing the IPL now. As a premier event, we need to act with great responsibility. Contemplation of IPL is inhuman right now. We need to save lives, not IPL. Lets say even if the situation improves by May and I hope it does, who is going to come and play? Will the (foreign players) be even allowed to enter the country?" Wadia said.