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'The final agreement insults club members' - East Bengal Executive Committee will not sign final agreement

16:00 BST 16/07/2021
East Bengal executive committee Nitu Sarkar Kalyan Majumdar
The committee maintain their stance on not signing final agreement of the JV which was to be formed between East Bengal and Shree Cement...

The deadlock between East Bengal and their investor Shree Cement showed no signs of easing with the Executive Committee of the club deciding not to sign the final agreement of the joint venture which was to be formed between the two parties. 

The Executive Committee of the club met on Friday and discussed at length the differences between the initial term sheet which was signed and the final agreement as claimed by the club officials.

After the meeting, the Executive Committee issued a press release informing their decision which read, "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."

What is going on at East Bengal?

After Quess Corp parted ways with East Bengal in June 2020 after being the club's investor for two seasons, Shree Cement came on board as their new investor which facilitated the club's move to the Indian Super League (ISL).

They then proceeded to establish a joint venture named Shree Cement East Bengal Foundation, in which the cement giants held 76 per cent stakes while the club had 24.

After Shree Cement's arrival, a term sheet was signed by both parties in September 2020 in the presence of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who had played an important role in bringing the company on board as the club's new investor.

Based on the term sheet, the club’s sporting rights as well all its assets and properties (including intellectual) were reportedly transferred to the newly formed joint venture between the two parties.

Even though the term sheet has been signed, a final binding agreement of the deal is yet to be signed by the officials despite multiple reminders.

The club officials have remained firm on the claim that certain points in the final agreement are different from the term sheet that the parties had signed. The new management, on the other hand, claims otherwise. 

Shree Cement managing Hari Mohan Bangur also mentioned in the past that no meeting with the officials will take until they put pen to paper.

What has Shree Cement management said?

A  senior official of the Shree Cement East Bengal management informed Goal that the management will only decide its next course of action once they receive an official letter from the club.

The senior official further stated that according to the club, only the assistant general secretary, Rupak Saha is authorised to speak on behalf of the club. So Saikat Ganguly's statement in this matter cannot be taken into consideration.