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    Corruption in the IPL: CSK, RR owners suspended for two years

    July 15, 2015

    In an order with far-reaching implications, the RM Lodha committee has suspended Indian Cements and Jaipur IPL, the owners of the Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals teams, for a period of two years. The committee has also banned for life Gurunath Meiyappan, a former team official of Super Kings, and Raj Kundra, a former Royals co-owner, from any involvement in cricket matches.


    The committee's order effectively leaves the two companies with teams that cannot play. Super Kings have twice won the IPL, and are perennial tournament favourites, while Royals won the inaugural edition. The onus is now on the BCCI and the two companies to work out the way forward, to decide whether the teams will be in a two-year limbo or play under different ownership.


    The news sent officials of the two franchises, and also of the BCCI, which owns the IPL, into a series of meetings as they began to make sense of the judgement. The IPL governing council is likely to meet over the weekend, and the BCCI's working committee might meet before that. In a brief statement Jagmohan Dalmiya, the BCCI president, said it was "committed to honour and respect judicial decisions and it would give its observations after the entire report is read and a collective decision is taken."


    Among the franchises, the initial sense was that both would appeal against the decision, though the sheer composition of this committee - Lodha is a former Chief Justice of India and Ashok Bhan and RV Raveendran are retired judges of the Supreme Court - suggests any court would be wary of overturning the decision.


    The committee, which made its report public in a 45-minute session in New Delhi, said its ruling was based on disciplinary grounds, on behalf of the BCCI. It refused to accept the argument that the acts of Gurunath and Kundra were personal, and that the franchises could thus not be held responsible.


    "Disrepute has been brought to cricket, the BCCI and the IPL to such an extent that there are doubts abound in the public whether the game is clean or not," Lodha, a former Chief Justice of India, said.


    "Jaipur IPL claims it is highly celebrated as a nursery of players. But three of its players have accused of alleged spot-fixing. This shows that all is not well in their handling of affairs. The position of Raj Kundra with the Rajasthan Royals franchise - part owner and team official - means his actions brought the game, BCCI and IPL into disrepute."


    Kundra responded on Twitter by saying, "Many inaccuracies...Have requested for a copy of the judgement. Obviously very shocked and disappointed..."(ESPN)

    Last modified on Tuesday, 14 July 2015 22:51

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