Worried about repercussions if contents of a sealed envelope handed over to the Supreme Court by the Justice Mudgal Commission is made public, the BCCI on Thursday requested the court not to release it to parties connected with an ongoing Public Interest Litigation on the IPL controversy.
The Board filed its response to the recommendations made by the Mudgal panel – which probed the IPL corruption scandal — to the court through secretary Sanjay Patel. The Apex Court is scheduled to resume hearing on IPL corruption on Friday, based on the findings of the Commission. The sealed envelope was submitted by the Mudgal panel members along with the report.
Still reeling from the spot-fixing scandal, the BCCI, in its response, said: "Speculation is rife that sealed cover contains names of some current members of the national team. The Honourable Court would kindly take steps to staunch any further damage to the image and reputation of innocent cricketers and the BCCI, by passing appropriate orders and thereby render justice.
"Speculative and baseless charges against leading cricketers have already been made by unscrupulous news channels under the guise of sting operation," the response argued.
The BCCI's 33-page response to the court on the Mudgal findings and recommendations also defended Gurunath Meiyappan, whom his father-in-law, BCCI president, N Srinivasan, described as an enthusiast. Meiyappan has been charged by the Mumbai police over illegal betting.
While the Board has accepted most of the recommendations made by the Commission, it has not agreed with a few, including the one which suggested that employment of the players in the franchise group companies should be avoided. The BCCI argued that this will mean doing away with the ultimate purpose of encouraging a sport.
Several India players, including skipper MS Dhoni, are employed by India Cements, which is owned by BCCI president N Srinivasan.
The Board has also attempted to duck a recommendation suggesting that players should not be allowed to own any stake or interest in players' agencies. It has said the provision will have to be incorporated in the players' contracts and it will examine the feasibility and act accordingly. The issue has been a highlighted after reports that an India skipper owned stake in a firm which manages several top cricketers.