IPL probe: Gurunath Meiyappan found guilty of betting

New Delhi, Feb 10: A committee, probing alleged corruption in the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL), has said in its report that BCCI boss N. Srinivasan’s son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan was “the face and team official” of IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and “the allegations of betting and passing information” against him “stand proved”.

In a 200-page document submitted to the Supreme Court Monday, the Justice Mukul Mudgal-led committee said the allegations of fixing against Meiyappan as well as Rajasthan Royals co-owner Raj Kundra need to be further investigated.

The apex court bench, headed by Justice A.K. Patnaik said they will pass the appropriate order March 7 after going through the report.

“The committee is of the view that the material on record clearly indicates that Meiyappan was the face of CSK and the team official of CSK,” said the report.

Srinivasan, whose company India Cements owns the CSK franchise, had earlier described Meiyappan as a “cricket enthusiast”.

The report, based on the information provided by the Delhi and Mumbai police and comprising FIR and chargesheet filed by Mumbai police and transcripts of telephonic conversations, says “Meiyappan was indulging in betting through Vindu Dara Singh who was in direct touch with the bookies and punters like Mr. Vikram Aggarwal”.

“Bets placed by Mr. Meiyappan inter alia were not only in favour of CSK but also against it. Meiyappan also bet on teams in matches of teams other than CSK,” the report said.

On the players involved in the scam, the committee felt that adequate punishment was meted out to S. Sreesanth (life ban), Ankeet Chavan (life ban), Amit Singh (five years suspension) and Siddharth Trivedi (one year suspension) by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).

A sealed envelope was also submitted to the court containing the names of persons who could be involved in the sporting fraud.

“During its interaction and on the review of documents provided, the committee has come across many allegations of sporting fraud, however, as of now these are mere allegations. We don’t think its proper to cast aspersions on the persons unless investigations are conducted,” said the report.

As part of the recommendations made to the Supreme Court, the report said former players like Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Rahul Dravid, Anil Kumble, Sourav Ganguly and Venkatesh Prasad should advise young players on the malaise of spot/match-fixing.

The probe committee comprised Mudgal, a former chief justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court; Additional Solicitor General of India L. Nageshwar Rao and senior advocate Nilay Dutta.

It was formed last year after the BCCI-appointed panel having former judges of the Madras high Court – Justice T Jayarama Chouta and Justice R Balasubramanian – was deemed illegal by the Bombay High Court. The Supreme Court refused to stay the order.

IANS