New Delhi [India], July 21 (ANI): East Bengal fans have taken to the streets of Kolkata in protest as the club’s Executive Committee has refused to sign the final agreement with Shree Cement. Hundreds of supporters thronged the club premises on Wednesday afternoon.
With the club’s officials and main sponsors Shree Cement at loggerheads due to the non-signing of the contract, the fate of the club in the Indian Super League (ISL) is uncertain.
Speaking to ANI, sources close to the investors made it clear that they would want the final agreement signed before moving forward.
“Shree Cement’s stance has been very clear from the first day. They want the definitive final agreement to be signed as per the termsheet, as was agreed upon. They are here to help East Bengal in every way possible and know what the club stands for.
“They have spent around Rs 54 crore in the first season and are willing to pull out all stops in order to help the club this season too, and beyond. But the signing of the final agreement needs to be the first step in that direction,” the source added.
The East Bengal club management had on Friday decided not to sign the final agreement with investor Shree Cement Limited. The decision was taken at an emergent meeting where all 24 executive members signed in a statement saying the same.
“Under the leadership of the club president (Dr. Pranob Dasgupta), the Executive Committee has decided not to sign the final agreement which will force us to transfer the ownership, club ground, club tent, logo and the name of the club to the investors. The final agreement is insulting to the club members and they curtail the rights of the members. We appeal to our fans to stand beside the club. Under the current circumstances, we have decided to discuss the matter with the former players of the club,” the statement read.
After the exit of former investors Quess Corp last year, East Bengal made a last minute entry into the ISL after Shree Cement came on board. Having acquired a stake of 76 per cent, the cement giants signed a term sheet with the club in September last year as the red-and-gold’s sporting rights, as well as all its assets and properties (including intellectual), were reportedly transferred to the newly-formed entity. But a final binding definitive agreement of the deal is yet to be signed by the club management, leading to the logjam. (ANI)
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