The government would soon come out with a stand-alone legislation to deal with match-fixing, spot-fixing or such dishonest practices in all kinds of sports, Union Law Minister Kapil Sibal told journalists here on Saturday.
“For the last 10 years we have been grappling with dishonest practices not just in cricket but in other sports too. But we have not been able to figure out if the Government of India has jurisdiction to make a law on this. Attorney-General G.E. Vahanvati has suggested a new law,” he said.
He, however, made it clear that the alleged match and sport fixings in the ongoing IPL matches and those arrested and being interrogated by the police for their role would not be brought under new legislation, as no law could have retrospective effect.
Instead of amending the Indian Penal Code, there was need for fresh legislation. Millions of fans out there could not be let down. New law would be applicable to everyone, including players, team management, bookies and others. It would be as broad-based. First draft of law would be ready in three to four days and it would be sent to the Sports Ministry for further consultations and opinions of experts.
“In the fresh legislation, we need to take into account various nuances as well as the technology in use by the actors. You can do so much even with gestures on the field etc, so law must be wide enough to include all of this in its ambit. Not just on the total outcome of the match but also during its play. It will deal with corporates, bookies, criminals besides players, including international players,” he said.
Expressing confidence about early enactment of new law, Mr. Sibal noted that the Opposition was on board. “We are committed to bringing this law as soon as possible. IPL Chairman Rajeev Shukla and Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley met me yesterday. All agreed that to control dishonest practices, there should be a stand-alone legislation. Mr. Jaitley added that the States cannot make this due to the cross territories nature.”
To a query on maximum punishment contemplated under the proposed law, he said it was too early to go into specifics. Asked whether the Board of Control for Cricket in India would come under new law, he said anyone found involved in dishonest practices would be dealt with by it.