The Madhavan Report
on the "Report on Cricket Match Fixing and Related Malpractices"
submitted by the Central Bureau of Investigation, India
Consequent upon allegations of cricket match fixing etc. which gained wide publicity from 8th April 2000, on the request of Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Youth Affairs & Sports, CBI registered Preliminary Enquiry No. 2/S/2000/SCB-I/DLI on 2nd May, 2000 and commenced enquiries in respect of allegations of match fixing and related malpractices.
2. It is necessary to explain the difference between a Preliminary Enquiry (PE) and a Regular Case (RC) registered by CBI. A case becomes an RC when an FIR is registered by the CBI under Section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. In such a case, CBI would conduct a statutory investigation under Chapter XII of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. In such an investigation CBI has powers of conducting searches and arrests. An RC, namely an FIR, would be registered by the CBI only if the complaint received by the CBI discloses the suspected commission of cognisable offence by anyone. As against this, if the complaint that is received by the CBI does not prima facie disclose the possible commission of any cognisable offence, CBI would register only a PE in which enquiries are conducted on the basis of the general police powers vested in the CBI. Such enquiries are not conducted under the provisions of the CrPC 1973. In a PE, CBI has no power of arrest and generally has no power of search also.
3. On completion of the enquiry CBI submitted its report of 162 pages to Government of India on 31st October, 2000 which was released to the media and the public by the Government of India on 1st November, 2000.
4. As I have been appointed as Commissioner by the Board of Control for
Cricket in India (BCCI) vide their letter dated August 29, 2000 to conduct follow up enquiries in such cases, BCCI made available to me a copy of the report on 2nd November, 2000. On receipt of the said report, I studied the report thoroughly and commenced conducting enquiries. This report/opinion (report for short) is being submitted to BCCI on completion of such enquiries as deemed necessary by me.
CHANDRACHUD COMMITTEE REPORT
5. Before I commence my analysis of the CBI report, it is necessary to briefly refer to the Chandrachud Committee Report.
6. Vide letter date 20.6.1997 from BCCI to Hon'ble Shri Justice Y.V. Chandrachud, a One Man Committee (Chandrachud Committee for short) was appointed by BCCI to hold enquiry into the alleged charges of betting and match fixing by Indian cricketers and /or by the management. This committee was set up consequent upon a cover story which appeared in the issue of "The Outlook" dated 11th June, 1997 in which the allegation made by Shri Manoj Prabhakar of his having been offered Rs. 25 lakhs by an Indian team member for sabotaging the match in Pakistan's favour before the India-Pakistan match in Sri Lanka during the Singer Cup in 1994 was published.
7. Hon'ble Shri Justice Y.V. Chandrachud submitted his 94 page report on 17th November, 1997. I have studied the report and shall refer to some relevant parts of the analysis and conclusions arrived at by the Committee.
8. When Chandrachud Committee conducted the enquiry, it was with a limited scope and without the environment which prevailed after the Hansie Cronje allegation was publicised by the Delhi Police. Consequently, the persons who deposed before the Committee were in no mood to state the truth and generally adopted postures to the effect that all was well with Indian cricket. Manoj Prabhakar, however, reiterated the allegation before the said Committee refused to name the player who made the offer him or to furnish any evidence before the Committee on certain grounds which are referred to by the Committee in the conclusion which the Committee arrived at.
9. For facility of ready reference, the said conclusion which appears at Pages 52-54 of the report of the Committee is reproduced below:-
"10. The fundamental objection of Manoj to disclosing the names of persons who offered him bribes or asked him to play below his form is that such a disclosure will spell danger to his life. He said in his statement before me that he was warned that his life will be in danger if he disclosed the names. I pleaded with him that he may disclose the names to me in confidence and that I will not mention those names in my report, much less that he had disclosed those names to me. Faced with this situation, he changed his stance, an adroit player that he is and said he is afraid that he will be sued or prosecuted if he disclosed the names. With my humble experience at the Bar an on the Bench, I told him how unfounded this fear was. But, he stuck to his crease for concealing the names. This, indeed is an easy exercise. Make any unfounded allegations you like against team-mates, officials and others and then try to get away with it by saying that the names of the culprits cannot be disclosed because there is danger to life or the fear of a litigation.
11. I have no hesitation in rejecting the allegations made by Manoj Prabhakar. They are imaginary and unrealistic. The question naturally arises as to why he should have resorted to tactics like these. The answer is provided by his own peers; according to them, Manoj lost his equipoise because firstly, to quote his own words, he was "thrown out of the Indian team". That deprived him of the opportunity to make handsome gains by the use of his unquestioned cricketing talents. Secondly, he was then discarded by his own home team, the Delhi District Cricket Association. That evidently unhinged him because, having been a hero of the crowds for quite some years, he was relegated into oblivion. From the admiring eyes of countless fans to a dark room is a fall too big to bear even for the most philosophical. He then tried to open a new leaf in his life by contesting an election to the Parliament. He rushed in where angels fear to tread and lost his wicket like a tail-ender. That was the last straw which broke a brave back.
12. Almost every player and manager who was interviewed by me spoke of Manoj as an impulsive, indisciplined and aggressive individual. All those who said this added that there can be no doubt that he was a lion-hearted player who was always on the kill and did his utmost for the team. It is to be regretted that a player of Manoj's caliber was not able to curb his immature and uninformed impulses. Cricket made him an idol of the crowds. Everyone regarded him as a fine all-rounder. It is tragic that he should have made untrue allegations which are calculated to dilute, if not to destroy, the glorious uncertainty, the fun the charm and the camaraderie of a great game. The greatest harm he has done is to his own image as a key player in the team. Cricket, I believe, will take care of itself. It is too deeply rooted in our lives and too widely liked and loved to be damaged or destroyed by unexamined outbursts of misguided individuals."
10. I am in respectful agreement with the conclusion arrived at by the
Committee based on the evidence available at that time.
Mail Cricket Editor