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November 1, 2000

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The CBI Report in Full -- Part 28

Nayan Mongia

His name has figured in match fixing and related malpractices in the statements of Azharuddin, Dr Ali Irani, Ajay Sharma and others. In fact, Azharuddin has stated that he used to rope in Mongia also whenever he "did" matches.

However, in spite of strong suspicion against Nayan Mongia, due to lack of corroboration on material particulars, the evidence against him is not all that strong. The evidence against Mongia is discussed in detail below.

Azharuddin has said that the other Indian players involved with him are Nayan Mongia and Ajay Jadeja. He has, however, not disclosed specific amounts of money paid to Mongia and Jadeja.

Azharuddin has, however, specified two matches in which Nayan Mongia was involved with him - the Titan Cup match at Rajkot and India-Pakistan one-dayer at Jaipur in 1999. Dr Ali Irani has stated that one of the players involved with Azhar was Mongia.

Ajay Sharma has also stated that Nayan Mongia used to operate through Azhar. MK, in his statement, has said that when Ajay Jadeja met him sometime in 1996 at his residence, he could "promise" only Mongia and hence, the deal did not come through.

Shri I S Bindra has stated that one Ali Irani had told him that Mongia was one of the players who had placed bets in England on a match not involving India. Nayan Mongia, in his statement, has denied that he has intentionally underperformed in any match.

He has also stated that he does not know any bookie. His telephone analysis does not disclose any contacts with known bookies. However, Mongia has not been able to explain his slow batting at Kanpur in the 1994 one-dayer against West Indies.

Prabhakar has stated that when Mongia came to the crease, he told Prabhakar to bat slowly and preserve wickets. Mongia has not explained as to who passed on such instructions. The coach during that series, Ajit Wadekar, Captain Azharuddin, Vice-Captain Sachin Tendulkar have all denied having given such instructions.

In the circumstances, it has to be presumed that it was Nayan Mongia who, on his own, passed the instructions. The evidence against Mongia is not strong. There is no direct evidence of any player/bookie having paid Mongia money to underperform.

Azharuddin's statement does not carry weight since he has implicated himself as well, but is not conclusive proof of the involvement of Nayan Mongia.

However, it has to be stated that Nayan Mongia could have only operated through other established stars since for a bookie/punter, he was not as "valuable" as Azhar or Jadeja, to be approached individually.

Even though there is no direct evidence linking Nayan Mongia in match fixing, his being named by various sources and the fact that he is not able to explain his slow batting and passing of instructions to Manoj Prabhakar to preserve wickets rather than go for runs in the India-West Indies one-dayer in Kanpur in 1994 does bring him under strong suspicion.

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