New twist to the IPL spot fixing saga

In what may be seen as a fresh turn to the spot fixing case surrounding the recently concluded IPL, a Delhi Court has stated that some among the accused were connected to organized crime syndicates and this has brought the case under the purview of the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act or MCOCA, which is among the stricter laws of its kind in the country. Dharmesh Sharma, an Additional Sessions Judge of the Delhi Court, has informed the media that there has been enough evidence against the ones whose bail appeals were rejected. The observations were provided while the bail application of Ajit Chandila and two others were granted by the court.


The order has become a significant one in the light of the fact that on June 10, 2013 a trial court had consented to the bail applications of Ankit Chavan and Sreesanth as well as some other people who were involved in the case. The court had also reprimanded the Delhi Police special cell for bringing in the rules and regulations of a legislation that is as hard as MCOCA in this case. Chandila who turned out for Rajasthan Royals in the 2013 IPL was arrested on 16th May and he received his bail on 9th September 2013. Deepak Kumar, one of the supposed bookies and Baburao Yadav who has previously played Ranji Trophy also received their bails on the same day.


The three of them received their bails with personal bonds worth INR 50 thousand for each of them as well as the surety of a similar amount. The bail appeals of Ramesh Vyas, Firoz Farid Ansari, Ashwani Agarwal, Jitender Kumar Jain and Sunil Bhatia were not consented to though. The court issued an order lasting 35 pages – here it clearly mentioned Chandila as the main fixer.


However, it also stated that there was not sufficient evidence against him to suggest that he knew nothing about the criminal organizations involved in the whole case or even of fact that Bhatia was related to the organized criminals. The court has however taken Delhi Police to task for being sloppy in getting necessary and hard evidence from other investigative bodies such as the DRI and the Mumbai Police. It has gone so far as to say that Delhi Police’s investigation has not been cohesive and has mainly followed a pick and choose policy, which is not really an appreciable one. For this purpose it has asked the Commissioner of Delhi Police to take a look into the case.


It has directed the official to examine the case yet again and make sure that proper evidence be collected from similar agencies so that entire process can be done in a firm and proper manner. Interestingly enough, Baburao Yadav was regarded as the weakest link in the case while Kumar was supposed to have been a punter when their bails were granted. Once again there was not enough evidence against these two to suggest anything else. The court felt that the only thing that Yadav gained from the whole episode was some bad name for his association with the supposed bad guys.


The court has meanwhile deferred the bail plea of Chandra Prakash or Chandresh Jain. He was supposedly accepting bets under the alias Jupiter and the investigation against him is still on. It was at this hearing that the date of October 7 was fixed for listening to the Delhi Police’s request that the 19 earlier bails granted in this case be cancelled. Incidentally, these bails too were granted on account of insufficient evidence. Meanwhile Sreesanth, Chavan and others accused in this case appeared at the court in accordance with the notices provided to them.


On a whole 39 people were involved in the case and the police has issued a charge sheet of 6 thousand pages against them. In the same document it has also implicated Chota Shakeel and the man he serves, Dawood Ibrahim, as the ones who were responsible for the spot fixing in the IPL. The only question is what would be the effect of the chargesheet – will the man who should not be named ever be extradited and tried for his acts of crime or ones where he had an indirect role? The heartening thing is that at least efforts are being made and if ever he is brought to this side there will not be a lack of proof.