IPL betting: SC appointed Lodha committee to decide fate of CSK, RR
A Supreme Court-appointed panel will hand down its sentence on Gurunath Meiyappan and Raj Kundra and their respective Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises on Tuesday in the spot-fixing and betting scandal that rocked the Twenty20 tournament in 2013.cricket Updated: Jul 14, 2015 12:42 IST
The Supreme Court-appointed justice RM Lodha committee, formed to investigate the 2013 IPL spot-fixing scandal, will give its order on Tuesday on the quantum of punishment to be handed to Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals and two of the teams' key officials who were found guilty.
Chennai Super Kings (CSK) team official Meiyappan and Rajasthan Royals co-owner Kundra were found guilty of betting in the tournament.
An outright ban on the two former IPL champions would be a devastating blow to what is only an eight-team tournament, and observers say former chief justice Rajendra Mal Lodha, who heads the three-man probe panel, is more likely to announce heavy fines. “It is actually not in the form of a report, as a matter of fact we will be pronouncing the order tomorrow (Tuesday). We are still dealing with other two issues,” justice Lodha told HT on Monday.
In March, the panel had issued showcause notices to Meiyappan and Kundra seeking their reply on the quantum of the punishment.
Lodha was appointed head of the sentencing panel in January after the Supreme Court had found Royals' co-owner Kundra and CSK's Meiyappan guilty of betting on the outcome of matches.
A trap is only a trap if you don't know about it. If you know about it, it's a challenge. Goodnight. Tomorrows going to be quite a day! :)— Raj Kundra (@TheRajKundra) July 13, 2015
The court had rejected the claims of Meiyappan, who had previously been described as team principal, that he was merely an enthusiast.
The court also ruled at the same time that Srinivasan, who is Meiyappan's father-in-law, would be banned from holding any post in the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), where he served as the president for three years from 2011.
The outcome could have major financial consequences for some of cricket's biggest names as CSK are captained by India's ODI captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni while Australia's star batsman Steve Smith is at the helm of the Rajastan Royals. The Royals are coached by Indian great Rahul Dravid.
Cricket circles are abuzz with speculation that the two teams will be suspended, but leading sports writer Ayaz Memon predicted that the franchises would get away with heavy fines. "I can't see them being banned because that could ruin the entire tournament and have a ripple effect on sponsors and broadcasters," Memon said.
The apex court had also asked the Justice Lodha panel to suggest administrative reforms in BCCI and decide the fate of IPL's chief operating officer, Sundar Raman. The Mudgal committee had found Raman guilty of having been in touch with the contact of a bookie. As far as the BCCI administrative aspects are concerned, the panel is still in the process of meeting with stakeholders.
Raman is yet to appear before the panel's investigating officer, Vivek Priyadarshi, superintendent of police (anti-corruption) with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The BCCI officials have provided answers to 80 questions sent by the panel, which is examining the responses.
The 2013 IPL season was mired in controversy after police launched legal proceedings against several officials and cricketers, including former Test fast bowler S Sreesanth, for illegal betting and spot-fixing.
(With inputs fron AFP)