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November 1, 2000

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The CBI Report in Full -- Part 7

During that series, Manoj Prabhakar claimed that he had fixed two one day matches in Gwalior and informed MK. However, his information proved incorrect. India won both the matches and MK suffered a huge loss. However, he recovered some of the losses in the one day match at Bangalore on the basis of information provided by Manoj Prabhakar.

In most of the matches fixed by Manoj Prabhakar, he used to claim that N S Sidhu was also with him. MK stated that during the series, he also met Umpire Piloo Reporter who assured him that he would give his assessment during that series.

According to MK, Reporter's assessment of the first Test at Calcutta turned out to be true and he paid him a small amount of money. MK further stated that when Sri Lanka toured India in 1994, Ranatunga and Aravinda D'Silva agreed to underperform in the first Test at Lucknow.

They also told him that they had not taken other players into confidence but could manage it since they were the captain and vice captain of the team. Accordingly, Sr Lanka lost the first test and MK made a good deal of money. MK stated that he paid $15,000 to D'Silva after the Test.

He also stated that both Ranatunga and D'Silva if were also ready to fix other tests, but the odds were very low. MK also had suspicion that they had fixed the other matches through Manoj Prabhakar with somebody else and hence did not take much interest.

Around this time, his relationship with Manoj Prabhakar deteriorated since he had become very money-minded and had also got involved with other bookies of Delhi and Bombay, and even with some big punters.

In 1994 there was a series in Sharjah in which India, Australia, Sri Lanka and Pakistan were scheduled to play. Manoj Prabhakar was not in the Indian team. MK went to Sharjah and met Mark Waugh and Salim Malik.

Salim Malik refused to "do" any matches for MK since he had become the captain, and Mark Waugh also refused any information. MK came back to India a dejected man without any gains.

In 1996, there was another tournament in Sri Lanka, the Singer Cup, in which India, Pakistan, and Australia were playing. During that series, MK rang up Salim Malik and requested him to do something for him. Salim Malik gave him information that Pakistan would lose one particular match against Australia which came out true, and he made good money on that.

By the end of 1994, disputes arose between MK and Anand Saxena, his partner, mainly because of Anand Saxena's womanizing and also because he had contracted some illness. MK has stated that Anand Saxena had cancer and he thought it might be infectious. His relationship with Manoj Prabhakar also reached a stage where MK stopped trusting him.

Most of his information had started turning out to be incorrect but his demands for money kept on increasing. MK discontinued his association with both Anand Saxena and Manoj Prabhakar during this time. MK however stated that Anand Saxena continued his friendship with Manoj Prabhakar since both of them had similar habit. By the end of 1994, Mukesh Gupta stopped book-making and became a punter.

Towards the end of 1994, West Indies came to India and MK met Brian Lara again. Brian Lara offered to underperform in two one day matches and his information proved correct and MK made some money by betting on those matches. MK stated that he gave a sum of around $40,000 to Brian Lara for that information.

During his career as a punter, MK was mainly involved with the Bombay bookie Anil Steel who became his close friend. MK further stated that around this time, Ajay Sharma renewed his contacts with MK once again and asked him for a sum of Rs 15,000 to help him purchase a Zen car since he was running short of money.

During their meeting, MK gave him the money and Ajay Sharma promised him that he could introduce Mohammad Azharuddin to him which could prove beneficial to both. Accordingly, Ajay Sharma fixed a meeting with Azahruddin at Taj Palace in Delhi some time in 1995. Ajay Sharma was paid a sum of Rs 5 lakhs for arranging this meeting and Azharuddin agreed to "do" some matches for him.

Azharuddin was paid a sum of Rs 50 lakhs as an advance with the arrangement that the initial amount would be adjusted against the matches he would 'do' for MK. Azharuddin promised MK that he would provide the exact information as to when India would win or lose. He does not remember the exact number of matches which Azhar 'did' for him during this period.

MK has stated that he also visited Calcutta during the inaugural ceremony of the World Cup in 1996. There he was introduced to Asif Iqbal by Anil Steel, who was on very good terms with Asif Iqbal. Some time in October 1996, Ajay Sharma contacted MK and told him that in the Australia-India Test match in Delhi, he could get the pitch prepared in such a way that there would be a definite result in the match.

Ajay Sharma told him that this could be done through a groundsman of Ferozeshah Kotla. Accordingly, MK met the groundsman of Ferozeshah Kotla along with Ajay Sharma and a result-oriented pitch was prepared. Since the pitch was spinner-friendly, that particular match ended in about three and a half days and MK made a good amount of money as a punter.

MK paid a sum of Rs 3 lakhs to Ajay Sharma after this match. Around this time, Azharuddin agreed to 'do' some matches for MK in the Titan Cup series. However, some of Azhar's information proved incorrect, and even the agreement that India would lose the final to South Africa did not materialize, and MK and Anil Steel incurred heavy losses and were almost broke.

Thereafter, MK went to Sharjah during an ongoing tournament and, through Asif Iqbal, met Jayasuriya. But Jayasuriya refused to 'do' any matches for MK.

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