New Delhi: IPL chief Lalit Modi may have been cornered but he is not out just yet. Reports claimed Wednesday that he may be offered an honourable way out by the BCCI governing council if he manages to clear allegations even as support for him from the IPL team-owners grew by the minute.
Standing in full and unconditional support of the chief of the billion dollar T20 league, Vijay Mallya, Shilpa Shetty, Shah Rukh Khan and other team-owners of the Indian Premier League said that his I-T issues were a government problem and as far as his management of the IPL was concerned, he was the best man for the job.
"I support Lalit as someone who has been part of IPL. It is Lalit`s brain child. Because of Lalit IPL happened," Shilpa told reporters.
"If there is something murky happening behind the scenes, I am unaware about it and in that case, let law take its own course. However, people should not jump to conclusions. Till you are not proven guilty, you are not guilty," she said.
"We must not forget that it was Lalit who made IPL successful in the overseas market. We must give him that credit. It is all because of his effort that IPL has become successful across the world," she said.
Shilpa`s statement comes in the wake of recent media reports of an Income Tax department probe revealing that Modi holds a silent stake in three IPL teams - the Rajasthan Royals, Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab.
It was learnt on Wednesday that Shashank Manohar might be appointed as the new IPL commissioner after Modi fell from the apex body’s favour owing to allegations of financial scandal against him. However, if the influential team-owners can muscle their way into the decision making, Modi might not be completely dissociated from the cricket cum entertainment business venture.
Meanwhile, Arun Jaitley was heading the IPL enquiry to look into the fund mismanagement and allegations of favouritism by Modi towards his family and friends.
BCCI is also looking into the formation of a new IPL council which would have a professional CEO to look into the executive functioning of the cash-rich league.
IPL has been embroiled in a murky controversies liked to money laundering, match fixing and involvement of big names from industrial and political backgrounds.