IPL spot-fixing case hearing today; can Srinivasan rebut conflict of interest charges?
The Supreme Court of India will resume the hearing on Indian Premier League (IPL) spot-fixing and betting case today.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court of India will resume the hearing on Indian Premier League (IPL) spot-fixing and betting case today.
In its last proceeding on Monday, the apex court had come down heavily on Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) step-aside president-in-exile N Srinivasan.
During the December 8 hearing, the bench headed by Justice S Thakur and F M Kalifullah had grilled Srinivasan on conflict of interest and said it was difficult for it to accept that the involvement of his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan - a team official of Chennai Super Kings - in betting during the IPL 2013 did not result in conflict of interest.
"Srinivasan is the vice chairman and managing director of India Cement Limited, an owner of IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings, your son-in-law is a team official and he is involved in betting. It is very difficult to accept the proposition that there is no conflict of interest," said the
Making distinction between commercial interest and what a professional gets paid for rendering professional services, the court had said: "Those who invest money to earn money and those who give professional advice and get money (for it) are two different things."
In the previous hearings, the court had questioned the BCCI as to why IPL franchise CSK shouldn't be disqualified from the IPL and asked them to act immediately on the Justice (Retd) Mukul Mudgal report.
The court also had said that BCCI elections should go ahead, but directed that all board members who are under investigation to keep away. Then, it asked the Indian board if there was any provision in its constitution to debar Srinivasan from contesting the BCCI polls in future.
Spot-fixing and betting scandal in cricket surfaced in 2013 with Delhi Police arresting three Rajasthan Royals players of cash rich IPL – S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan – in a midnight raid in Mumbai. Then, Mumbai police also unearthed betting links after they arrested Srinivasan's son-in-law Meiyappan and Bollywood actor Vindu Dara Singh.
Last October, the apex court had constituted the Justice Mukul Mudgal committee to investigate the IPL spot-fixing and betting case. The three-member panel led by Justice Mudgal, a retired Punjab and Haryana High Court judge, also includes Additional Solicitor General L Nageswara Rao and senior advocate Nilay Dutta in the committee.
And on February 10 this year, the committee submitted its first report to the court after conducting a four-month long probe. It is learnt that cricketers, board officials, cops, lawyers and even journalists had deposed before the panel and their depositions were recorded during the probe.
In the follow up, the court had asked the committee to continue its investigation of the persons named in the sealed envelope and the committee was also given greater powers to effectively conduct its probe.
Then, the committee submitted its final report to the apex court on November 3, thus allowing the court to proceed with the final phase of hearing.
With agency inputs