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No Electricity At Stadium Hosting India Vs Australia T20; Bill Unpaid Since 2009

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Raipur: The fourth T20 clash between India and Australia in Raipur’s Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh stadium faced a crucial issue on Friday, with specific sections of the venue lacking electricity. The cause? An unpaid electricity bill has lingered since 2009.

According to reports, the stadium, owing an outstanding bill of Rs 3.16 crore, had its electricity disconnected five years ago. While a temporary connection has been arranged by the Chhattisgarh State Cricket Association, it solely caters to the spectators’ gallery and boxes. As a result, a generator will be necessary to light up the floodlights during the match.

Reportedly, as per Ashok Khandelwal, the Raipur Rural Circle in-charge, the Secretary of the Cricket Association has submitted a request to increase the capacity of the stadium’s temporary connection.

Currently, the temporary connection stands at 200 KV. Although the application to upgrade it to 1,000 KV has been given the green light, actual work on the enhancement is yet to commence.

Back in 2018, there was an up roar among athletes in a half-marathon as they discovered a lack of electricity supply at the stadium. It was later revealed that the unpaid electricity bill, accumulated since 2009, had reached Rs 3.16 crore.

Following the stadium’s construction, the Public Works Department (PWD) took charge of its maintenance, with the Sports Department expected to cover additional costs. However, a dispute has arisen between these two departments, each blaming the other for the lingering unpaid power bill.

Despite multiple notices from the electricity company urging the Public Works Department (PWD) and Sports Department to settle their outstanding dues, no payment has been initiated.

The stadium has hosted three international cricket matches since the power connection was severed in 2018.

The media coordinator of Chhattisgarh State Cricket Sangh, Tarunesh Singh Parihar, raised concerns about the feasibility of hosting international matches due to potential challenges. He noted that, for major matches, they opt for generators as an alternative solution.

“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,” Parihar said.

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