Recently Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced the list of players to be given the contract for the upcoming year. Smriti Mandhana did have a say that regarding the pay grade finalized by BCCI for both the Senior Men and Women Teams.

BCCI’s Annual Contract out for the year 2020-21

 A total of 28 Senior Men and 19 Senior Women are included in the contract for the year 2020-21. The list of players included in the contract is mentioned below:

Source : ESPN Cricinfo
Source : ESPN Cricinfo

The main controversy that happened at this announcement was the difference in the grade pay for the players. The Senior Men get a whooping sum of 7 crores if they are in the top bracket. Whereas their female counterpart is getting a paltry sum of 50 lakhs in comparison. This is a huge gap where the male cricketers are getting paid almost 14 times in the top bracket.

Let’s have a breakdown of how much money is BCCI putting in giving the contracts to the Senior Men and Women Players. On calculating it is found that BCCI spend 96 crores on senior men as opposed to 5.1 crores to Senior Women. The number of players contracted are also in the favour of men, with BCCI handing contract to 28 men against only 19 women. Statiscally, BCCI is spending only 5% of the money spent in annual contracts on Women.

Smriti Mandhana’s stand on this issue

The debate was stirred as to when will the BCCI entertain equal pay for Senior Men and Senior Women on social media. In an Interview, Smriti Mandhana was asked about the same. To this, she had a clear thought process. She responded by saying that the Women are generating a small portion of revenue for the BCCI in comparison to the Men’s Team.

She further added that she and her teammates are at present not concerned about the gap in the pay and only focused on winning at present. In that way, they will be able to generate more revenue and also be able to stake claims at equal pay. She addressed the issue saying that the day women’s cricket starts generating good revenue she will be the first one to raise claims for equal pay for the players.

The actual cause of controversy

The fact that a Grade C male cricketer was getting more money than a Grade A female cricketer even though the Board considered that female player more important as evident from the grade placement was mind-boggling. There have been claims so many times of equal pay in International cricket for men and women players but it is yet to be achieved. We hope that equal pay is implemented in this state of affairs as soon as it can be practically achieved.

The world’s biggest Cricket Control Board, BCCI is worth 14,489.80 crores. Surely they can spend few crores more and grant equal pay or a more justifiable pay for the women cricketers and the ratio of 14:1 is surely not justifiable. The Indian Women Team is all set to play only the second pink ball test with the Australian Team later, which is truly remarkable. They are the leaders in making in the Women Cricket and there is no one who can stop them from achieving the great heights that they are destined for now,