Lalit Modi, the suspended IPL chairman, failed to appear before the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s Disciplinary Committee, which met at the Cricket Centre in Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium on Friday.
Holidaying in Europe, Modi was believed to be on a yacht somewhere off the coast of Sardinia, near Italy.
However, the Board, in a departure from its rules and regulations, allowed Modi to be represented by his lawyers. It is standard practice for a member under investigation to appear in person before the Disciplinary Committee, but the Board decided to allow Modi to be represented by his lawyers given the complex nature of some of the documents and submissions involved. This done, the Board was also represented by its legal counsel.
Modi's lawyers demanded once more that certain members of the three-man Disciplinary Committee recuse themselves from the hearings as they were biased against Modi. To take this matter forward the Board has given the Modi camp time till July 18 to submit further documents that back up this plea.
Once this plea was submitted, the BCCI would respond by July 25, after which another hearing of the Disciplinary Committee would take place in New Delhi on July 27.
Modi's lawyers could not confirm whether their client would appear in person for that hearing.
On Friday, the committee comprising senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley, Union minister of state for commerce and industry Jyotiraditya Scindia and Chirayu Amin decided that Modi might have to appear before them at some stage.
Modi has demanded that Chirayu Amin step down from the committee as he was part of a failed bid for an IPL team. Modi also asks Jaitley to excuse himself as he was part of the Working Committee that unanimously voted to ratify charges against him.
"We have informed Mr. (Venkatesh) Dhond and Mr. Abdi that the disciplinary committee may require to question Mr. Modi in person," the Board's Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Prof Ratnakar Shetty said. Whether Modi will appear before the committee on July 27, is unclear.