Suspended IPL boss replies to more charges
Suspended Indian Premier League chief Lalit Modi has replied to new charges over irregularities in awarding cinema rights for the glitzy cricket tournament, his lawyer said.cricket Updated: Jun 16, 2010 12:56 IST
Suspended Indian Premier League chief Lalit Modi has replied to new charges over irregularities in awarding cinema rights for the glitzy cricket tournament, his lawyer said on Wednesday.
Modi signed a 10-year deal worth 71 million dollars with a Dubai-based company last November to broadcast the hugely popular Twenty20 event on cinema screens across the country.
The Indian cricket board (BCCI), which owns the IPL, accused Modi of undervaluing the deal and finalising it without consulting the tournament's governing body.
Modi, who is on holiday in Europe, emailed his reply to BCCI officials late Tuesday, while a hard copy was delivered to the cricket board's offices in Mumbai, his lawyer Mehmood Abdi said.
"It's a matter of routine internal procedure and record," Abdi told reporters. "A mountain has been made out of a molehill."
Modi has already replied to separate charges of corruption and indiscipline levelled by the BCCI and a further charge of trying to set up a rebel Twenty20 league in England.
His replies will be placed before a three-member disciplinary panel of the BCCI, which will then recommend to the general body whether he should be reinstated or not.
The panel, comprising BCCI president Shashank Manohar and vice presidents Arun Jaitley and Chirayu Amin, has until November to settle the matter, according to the board's constitution.
Abdi insisted that Manohar should not sit in judgement over Modi since he and BCCI secretary N. Srinivasan were "trying to settle personal scores".
Modi, 46, had run the IPL as a virtual one-man show since its inception three years ago, creating a heady and lucrative blend of star-studded cricket, big business and Bollywood glamour.
The BCCI suspended Modi and ordered a probe into allegations of corruption, tax evasion and money-laundering in the tournament after the government launched an investigation.
Modi also stood down as a BCCI vice president and as chairman of the T20 Champions League, a separate club tournament organised jointly by India, Australia and South Africa.
The charges against Modi include rigging IPL bids, holding proxy stakes in teams and receiving kickbacks in return for broadcasting deals.
His troubles began in April when he revealed the ownership details of a new franchise set to join the tournament in 2011.
He embarrassed a high-profile member of the government, junior foreign minister Shashi Tharoor, by leaking on Twitter how Tharoor's girlfriend had been given a free stake in the new team.
The minister was forced to resign under pressure from the opposition, which accused him of misusing his office to secure personal gain.