The Supreme Court has endorsed a Kerala High Court judgement which held various sports body officials to be 'public servants' and liable to be prosecuted under Prevention of Corruption Act.
A bench of justices VS Sirpurkar and TS Thakur upheld the high court's October 26 ruling, dismissing two separate appeals by Kerala Cricket Association secretary TC Mathew and president TR Balakrishnan against it.
The high court had held the two to be public servants while permitting their prosecution under anti-corruption law. The apex court dismissed the KCA appeals, noting that the sports body officials handle huge funds, allocated by the government, and perform functions akin to those of public servants, like selecting cricket team and controlling players' activities. "If you actually handle so much funds, can you say you are not discharging public functions?" said the apex court bench.