Criticises the decision to stage a part of the 2014 IPL in the UAE, demands CBI probe
Former BCCI president Shashank Manohar has demanded the resignation of N. Srinivasan as per the observations made by the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
Talking to The Hindu, Manohar said he was only reiterating what he said when the IPL-related corruption charges became public during the course of the sixth edition last year.
In a written statement, he said: “The Supreme Court’s observation is that there are very, very serious allegations [Mudgal Committee report on the alleged IPL-VI spot-fixing, betting and match-fixing] and unless the BCCI president steps down, no fair probe can be conducted. I said this long back when the scandal broke that all IPL matches should be investigated.
“I feel that a thorough probe needs to be done by the CBI as the canvas of the activities extends throughout the country. In view of the serious allegations, regarding betting, spot-fixing and match-fixing, the public at large has lost its faith in the IPL games.”
Manohar said the integrity of the game is paramount. “Considering the latest developments in the BCCI, it is my considered opinion that until the faith of the people in the integrity of the game is restored, the IPL tournament for the year 2014 should be suspended. As regards suspending IPL 2014, the Board members should remind themselves that money / profits is neither the aim nor the objective of the Board. The primary duty is to promote a clean game of cricket.”
Manohar also questioned the wisdom of the BCCI to play the IPL-VII matches in the UAE. He said: “Many years back a conscious decision was taken by the BCCI to abstain from [playing] matches in the Middle East in view of certain information regarding rampant betting and match-fixing [there]. As far as I know, that decision has not been revoked.
“Due to the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, the decision to shift the IPL matches to the Middle East will further tarnish the already murky waters surrounding the tournament. I had said earlier that all the IPL matches should first be investigated and only then can all the erring parties be punished, and the clean-up initiated. What has been lately revealed could well be the tip of the iceberg.
“Cricket is the most popular game in India and it enjoys a dedicated viewership of millions. This is what generates income and fuels BCCI’s clout at the international level. If the faith of the public is not restored, the BCCI would be failing the public, which has catapulted it to being the most influential player on the international scene,” concluded Manohar.