In the Mudgal Committee Report that came out a few days back N Srinivasan, the present Chairman of the ICC and president of the BCCI, has been found to be not guilty of having taken any step to stop the investigation of corruption in IPL 2013, of abetting fixing or even partaking in the same. However, interestingly enough it has been said in the report that the BCCI supremo, along with four other top officials, was aware that an Indian cricketer may have violated the code of conduct of the tournament but did not take any action. However, the name of the concerned player as well as how he may have contravened the ICC code is not known yet.
The Mudgal Committee Report has also implicated Sundar Raman, the chief operating officer of the IPL, by stating that he had the contact details of a certain bookie and got in touch with the concerned person eight times during the 2013 season, which was under scanner for the particular investigation. Two other people – Gurunath Meiyappan and Raj Kundra – had also been served notices by the Supreme Court in this case. As per the report it has been proven that Meiyappan was a CSK official and not a cricket enthusiast as had been stated by some. It has also been substantiated that he did indeed take part in unsanctioned betting.
The report has also stated that Raj Kundra, who happens to be one of the owners of Rajasthan Royals, had been charged for being in contact with bookies across the season. However, he never reported the same to the concerned authorities and thus failed to observe the anti-corruption code of the IPL and BCCI. It has also been proven from the information that reached the committee that he had indulged in placing bets on his team’s performance.
Shivlal Yadav, the interim president of the BCCI, has stated that proper action shall be taken against Kundra and Meiyappan. He also went on record saying that if evidence could be produced against Raman, then he will be subjected to punitive action as well. Now the question that comes up is what would happen of the people whose names have come to the forefront. Let’s start with Srinivasan. Many opponents of the ICC chief including Shashank Manohar, Aditya Pratap Verma and Lalit Modi may have thought just being named in the report could spell the death knell for Srinivasan but having been absolved of any wrongdoing in the report it seems that he will continue to enjoy the position of ICC chief and BCCI president for the time being.
With regards to Raman, he has denied that he was aware of the concerned person’s involvement in betting and he already has the backing of the BCCI. Probably his organizational capabilities and the overall success of IPL are factors that could go in his favour. As far as Kundra is concerned, it is being stated that he will most probably give up his share in the franchise till his name is cleared.
In any other set-up with a less favourable view on such issues, the franchise may have been terminated but Rajasthan Royals have a significant fan following and are also one of the better performing franchises in the tournament. So they may escape the axe – at least on this occasion. The case is also similar and perhaps much more with Chennai Super Kings who are one of the dominant names in the world of domestic T20 around the world. It is also unwise to expect that Srinivasan would let his own team be banned like that considering he still calls the shots in Indian cricket.
The franchise has in fact also questioned why it should be penalized for the actions of Gurunath. It is in this context one wonders what will happen to the image of a certain MS Dhoni who had testified that Meiyappan was a cricket enthusiast – a statement that has now been proven to be a lie. But then, considering the short attention span of Indian cricket fans as well as the immense weight of his achievements it is hard to see much happening on this front.