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|April 20, 2000||
The Chandrachud Report
On 20th June 1997, the following references were made to me by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) under the signature of Shri. Raj Singh Dungarpur, the President of BCCI. The references reads as follows:-
1. "The Board of Control For Cricket in India ("BCCI") is primarily responsible for selecting the Indian team for playing official cricket matches under the auspices of the International Cricket Council ("ICC"). BCCI is non-profit autonomous body, its objects and functions being regulated by its Memorandum and Regulations.
2. In recent past, serious charges have been leveled against members of the Indian team for betting and for match-fixations of international cricket between the Indian team selected by the BCCI and teams of other countries.
3. In a cover story which was published in The Outlook magazine in its issue dated 11th June I997, Shri. Manoj Prabhakar, an international cricketer of repute, is reported to have made the following allegations:-
(i) I was approached by certain quarters to perform below par in certain matches.
(ii) Before the India-Pakistan match in Sri-Lanka for the Singer Cup in 1994, I was offered Rs. 25 lakhs by an Indian team member for sabotaging the match in Pakistan's favour. I was told to play below my usual standard.
(iii) There are times that things are so obvious, the entire nation has watched it happen . In Kanpur, when we were chasing West Indies score, Mongia came into bat and conveyed the management instructions to get as close to the target. The resultant hullabaloo about my going slow should be directed at the team management and not me as I was doing so under their instructions.
4. In the said cover story in Outlook magazine , the writer Shri Aniruddha Bahal, has alleged, inter-alia, that a senior Mumbai police officer who has represented Bombay University in Cricket has categorically stated that he has records to prove and is prepared to present the evidence if BCCI sets up a probe panel to substantiate the alleged claim that during the 1994-95 tour of New Zealand, two Indian players made arrangements with one identified bookie (who can be produced as a witness) for fixing the match played against New Zealand.
Shri. Bahal also named few officials of BCCI as well as journalists who were allegedly aware of and/or involved in "the betting racket." Shri Bahal has alleged that "there is betting in cricket. and India loses matches".
5. In response to a letter dated 6th June 1997 written by BCCI, Shri Prabhakar reiterated by his reply dated 16th June 1997 that the contents of the said article printed, published and circulated in Outlook magazine in its issue dated 11th June 1997 are correct and alleged that he "had informed the concerned persons and had been told that he should play his game and that they would do the needful".
Shri Prabhakar however, refused to provide any particulars or the names on the ground that "no useful purpose would be served..especially because it would be virtually impossible for me to prove the incident that had occurred". Shri Prabhakar has been quoted by the newspaper as having said: "If I could ever reveal all that I have gone through and seen, you would see that in this hamam(bathroom) of Indian cricket almost everyone is naked".
6. In yet another publication in The Pioneer published on 19th April 1997, its Sports Editor, Shri Pradeep Magazine, has alleged that "he was offered Rs. 40 lakhs by a Delhi bookie to fix matches" played between Indian and West Indies cricket teams in the recently concluded series. Despite being requested by the BCCI by its letter dated 3rd June 1997 to disclose the name of " Delhi bookie", Shri Magazine did not divulge the name.
7. On 4th June 1997, Shri Ajit Wadekar, a former Indian captain and Manager of the Indian Cricket team, while reacting to the allegations made by Shri Manoj Prabhakar in the news magazine Outlook, claimed, inter alia, to have tapped the telephone conversations of Indian players for a month or so after the Indian team's return from the South African tour, for finding out whether there was anything incriminating or objectionable which would have led to such a false allegation. The fax message sent by Sri Ajit Wadekar to the Indian Express and carried all over India, was reproduced by Shri Joy Chakravarty, the Reporter. Shri Ajit Wadekar denied subsequently of having "tapped" the telephones of Indian cricketers. In response to the letter issued by BCCI to Shri Jit Wadekar on 6th June 1997, Shri Wadekar forwarded a Xerox copy of the fax, but while comparing the said Xerox copy with the Xerox of the fax that has been printed and published by the Indian Express, Mumbai edition, on the 10th June 1997, glaring discrepancies were noticed.
Mail Prem Panicker
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