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IPL betting: BCCI suspends Raj Kundra

Last updated on: June 10, 2013 14:45 IST

IPL betting: BCCI suspends Raj Kundra

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Rajasthan Royals’ co-owner Raj Kundra was suspended by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Monday on charges of gambling during IPL VI matches while Ravi Sawani's report on the spot-fixing scam was forwarded to the Board's disciplinary panel in an Emergent Working Committee meeting in New Delhi.

"The Working Committee today decided to suspend Raj Kundra on allegations of gambling on IPL VI matches till the pendency of inquiry," a senior working committee member and BCCI office-bearer said.

"Kundra will be debarred from taking part in any cricketing activity related to Rajasthan Royals which effectively means that he won't be seen during Rajasthan Royals matches in the upcoming Champions League Twenty20 in September," he said.

The Board's head of the interim arrangement, Jagmohan Dalimya, was forced to call the meeting after the Delhi Police claimed that Kundra, a minority (11.7 per cent) shareholder in Rajasthan Royals, had confessed to betting during the IPL matches.


Image: Raj Kundra with Rochelle Maria Rao
Photographs: BCCI

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'Same rules apply to players, management or owners'

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If the charges are proved, Rajasthan Royals face the prospect of being terminated from the IPL and to avoid this fate, the franchise has already distanced itself from Kundra.

"As a franchise, we have always been clear that the same rules apply to players, management or owners. As such, our actions will be consistent as in the case of the spot fixing allegations with respect to our players.

"Mr Raj Kundra is a minority (11.7 percent) shareholder, and he has no involvement in the running of the franchise. We believe that Mr Raj Kundra is a law abiding citizen and would not act contrary to law. If however, he is proven guilty, or has breached any regulations, he will be suspended, and he will also forfeit his shares.

"This is a strict governance procedure agreed to by all Rajasthan Royals shareholders, and it is consistent with our zero tolerance approach," said Rajasthan Royals Chairman Ranjit Barthakur and CEO Raghu Iyer in a statement.


Image: Raj Kundra
Photographs: BCCI

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Rajasthan Royals has been assisting the police in the investigations

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The Jaipur-based franchise in its statement said that Rajasthan Royals has been assisting the police in the investigations.

"In the last few days, various members of the RR management have been assisting the Delhi Police in their investigation for a better appreciation and understanding of the matter. As we have stated before, we are cooperating with the authorities to ensure a thorough inquiry and will continue to share any such information that they may seek from us in the future. We are working hard as co-complainants to ensure that all information is made available to the authorities," the Rajasthan Royals statement said.

BCCI's Anti Corruption and Security Unit chief Ravi Sawani also tabled his report on the three tainted cricketers -- Test pacer S Sreesanth, Ashok Chandila and Ankeet Chavan -- who have been arrested for alleged spot-fixing.


Image: Raj Kundra with wife Shilpa Shetty during an IPL match
Photographs: BCCI

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'Sawani's report to be handed to the disciplinary committee'

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The working committee decided to forward the report to the Board's disciplinary committee.

"The sealed report of Sawani was not opened at the meeting as the committee found it prudent to hand it over to the disciplinary committee," the official said.

"As is the process of natural justice, the players, once they are out of judicial custody, will be summoned for presenting their side of the story before the final verdict is pronounced," he added. Among other decisions, the working committee ratified the name of Sanjay Patel as the Secretary and also elected Mumbai Cricket Association President Ravi Sawant as the Treasurer, a post left vacant by Ajay Shirke in the wake of the spot-fixing scandal.

Delhi Police had earlier last week claimed that Raj Kundra has admitted to betting in the IPL through bookie Umesh Goenka.


Image: Raj Kundra with wife Shilpa Shetty during an IPL match
Photographs: BCCI

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Bindra questioned Dalmiya's right to pronounce Kundra's suspension

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Kundra is Goenka's partner in his steel ingots manufacturing business called Ashwini Steel Private Limited in Ahmedabad.

Monday's meeting saw some heated exchange between some Board members and former BCCI and current Punjab Cricket Association President I S Bindra, who questioned the authority of Dalmiya.

Bindra asked in what capacity was Dalmiya pronouncing Kundra's suspension and appointing Patel and Sawant as executive functionaries of the Board since he is not the interim President.

To this, Sawant, who was representing the MCA, protested and showed Bindra a clause in the BCCI Constitution that allows someone to convene and conduct a meeting if five members of the current working committee propose his name. After this, Bindra's protest didn't find any takers.

Dalmiya is heading the interim arrangement after N Srinivasan stepped aside as President following allegations of betting against his son-in-law and Chennai Super Kings Team

Principal Gurunath Meiyappan. Srinivasan's company India Cements owns the IPL franchise.

Asked whether there was any discussion regarding Chennai Super Kings during the meeting, the official answered in the negative.


Image: Raj Kundra with wife Shilpa Shetty during an IPL match
Photographs: BCCI

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