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IPL officials held for corruption were tackling operations of illegal bookies

Senior officials involved with investigations linked to the 2013 IPL spot-fixing scandal have been held for taking bribes from the accused.

cricket Updated: Feb 23, 2017 19:29 IST
HT Correspondent
Indian Premier League,corruption,CBI
Officials involved with investigations linked to the 2013 IPL spot-fixing scandal have been held for taking bribes.(REUTERS)

The CBI arresting former Enforcement Directorate joint director, JP Singh, is a great case study of how illegal bookies who were school dropouts not only were corrupting professional cricketers but also those at high levels in the intelligence establishments.

According to a CBI spokesperson, Singh and three other arrested ED officials, while investigating the 2013 Indian Premier League spot-fixing scandal, allegedly took huge bribes from the accused to botch up the case.

In 2015, CB-CID also filed a charge-sheet against suspended senior IPS officer from Tamil Nadu, Sampath Kumar, alleging that he collected crores of rupees from bookies involved in the IPL spot-fixing scandal to weaken the case.

Both officers were instrumental in exposing an organised IPL betting syndicate and investigations under them had unearthed novel methods being used by the illegal cricket betting industry.

JP Singh’s investigation as joint director in ED’s Ahmedabad zonal unit claimed bookies were exploiting the nearly 12-second time lag in the live telecast of IPL matches and manipulating betting patterns with the help of ‘ball–by-ball live’ commentary over cell phones by assigned ‘pitch-siders’ from the inside the stadiums. Charge-sheet filed by JP Singh’s office against these arrested persons revealed this.

Then ED, Ahmedabad allegedly unearthed an international cricket betting racket involving Rs 2,000 crore, which led to the arrest of many persons under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002. Most of the arrested bookies were school dropouts.

Sampath Kumar, who was then SP in Tamil Nadu Police, was investigating a case of human trafficking that led to the unearthing of the IPL betting syndicate in 2013.

Kumar’s investigation exposed that bookies were operating through ‘illegal telephone exchanges’. An alleged top bookie, Parasnath, hired many people to sit in the stadiums during IPL matches to provide live commentary for people placing or handling bets. Known bookies Iqbal Mirchi and Iqbal Memon were alleged to have been involved.

First Published: Feb 22, 2017 21:51 IST