Mumbai: In a landmark moment to tackle gender ‘discrimination’ in cricket, Jay Shah, the Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), announced on Wednesday that the country’s women cricketers will now earn the same amount of match fees as their male counterparts.
While saying that Indian cricket is moving towards a new era of gender equality, Shah also announced that the BCCI will also be implementing a pay equity policy for the contracted India women’s cricket team players.
“I’m pleased to announce @BCCI’s first step towards tackling discrimination. We are implementing a pay equity policy for our contracted @BCCIWomen cricketers. The match fee for both Men and Women Cricketers will be the same as we move into a new era of gender equality in Indian Cricket,” said Shah through his official Twitter handle.
“In our Apex Council meeting today, we have made a marquee decision on pay equity for our women cricketers. Our women players will be paid the same match fees as men in international cricket. This decision sets the platform to grow and develop cricket. I believe this is a significant step forward for women’s cricket and the game overall,” said Roger Binny, BCCI President, in an official statement.
As per the announcement, India’s women cricketers will be paid the same match fee as their male counterparts, both female and male cricketers will earn INR 15 lakh as Test match fee while playing in an ODI and T20I will fetch them match fees of INR 6 lakh and 3 lakh respectively.
It is the first time that Indian men’s and women’s professional game has been combined under one master agreement.
“It was my commitment to our women cricketers and pay equity is an important step towards tackling discrimination. The female cricketers will be paid the same match fee as their male counterparts.”
“This is a landmark decision as we enter a new era in India Cricket. I would like to thank my colleagues in the BCCI Apex Council,” added Shah.
In July this year, New Zealand had announced in a five-year agreement that their women’s and men’s cricketers will earn the same match fees across all formats at the international as well as domestic level.
“This is a revolutionary step for the women’s game and I believe this move will serve as a motivation for the present and future stars of women’s cricket. A lot was spoken about the way forward for the women’s game and I believe pay equity is a step towards that direction. It is an important move, a hallmark one at that and I am sure this will hold the game in good stead going forward,” said Rajeev Shukla, vice president, BCCI.
Of course, the same match fee does not mean real pay parity in Indian cricket as there is currently a huge disparity in the central contract fee that the men and women are offered. But match fees parity is a step in the right direction for more much equalities in the future.
“To support the players of the present and tomorrow, this move will prove to be a game-changer. Women’s cricket is on the rise and the decision of pay equity for our women’s cricketers is another giant step in BCCI’s continuous endeavour to bolster the game. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the members in the BCCI Apex Council who supported the decision,” said Ashish Shelar, Treasurer, BCCI.
As of now, the centrally-contracted male players get INR 7 crore, INR 6 crore, INR 3 crore and INR 1 crore in four categories (A+, A, B, C) while the women players get INR 50 lakh, INR 30 lakh and INR 10 lakh each in three grades (A, B, C). The BCCI is yet to announce the latest set of contracts for the upcoming season for both men’s and women’s players.
“The Indian women’s cricket team has continuously made the country proud with their superb performances across the globe and pay equity is a significant move to appreciate the hard yards the team has been putting in to yield magnificent results.”
“I am delighted that the BCCI Apex Council has taken this historic decision as women’s cricket in India continues to rise. This landmark decision will certainly help in removing gender disparity and encourage more girls to take cricket as a profession,” concluded Devajit Saikia, Joint Secretary, BCCI.