New Delhi, Sep 30 (PTI): The Supreme Court made it clear on Monday that N Srinivasan, re-elected as president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, should not participate in matters relating to the Indian Premier League and the spot fixing issue, observing there is “something seriously wrong” with the apex cricket body which has lost its credibility.
”He will continue (as BCCI President) but will not participate in the IPL issue,” the apex court said, noting that “the fairness of the probe should not be affected”.
The court asked Srinivasan not to be in a “hurry” and allow the Cricket Association of Bihar to mull over his suggestion that a committee under the chairmanship of either Arun Jaitley or Vinay Dutta, both of whom are lawyers, be constituted to probe the IPL spot fixing scandal, which involves his son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan.
”Don't be in hurry. Give them the proposal and let them consider your suggestion,” a bench of justices A K Patnaik and J S Kehar said, adding that the court will have to see the “effect” of his presidentship on the free and fair probe into IPL spot-fixing case.
”One thing is clear from the fact that so many things are coming from the IPL. So many things are there. Something is seriously wrong with the apex cricket body,” the bench said, adding, “Please tell us, as to why it (BCCI) has lost the credibility.”
”Oh, we are back,” one of judges of the bench remarked at the start of the hearing and then, the other judge said, “he (Srinivasan) is also back.”
“You (Srinivasan) are there now (as President). Only thing we have to see how far you being there (as BCCI President) will affect the probe,” the bench said.
Senior advocate C A Sundaram, appearing for BCCI, said certain actions, as per the constitution of the cricketing body, are required to be done by the President and it was willing to assure the bench that “so far as IPL is considered, he (Srinivasan) will have no role.”
He then suggested constitution of a committee for probing the IPL spot fixing by a panel to be headed either by Jaitely or by Dutta.
Senior advocate Harish Salve, appearing for the Bihar cricket body, said, ”the IPL is part of BCCI. Moreover, the son-in-law is the principal of the team (Chennai Super Kings), which is owned by India Cements. Srinivasan is a part of the company (India Cements).”
He said the team principal is involved in betting and is the son-in-law of the BCCI President, who also owns the India Cements, owner of the CSK and the question of cancelling the franchise of the team will come to him.
”In this scenario, integrity of process has to be maintained. The entire probe of the IPL has to be taken out of the BCCI,” Salve said and called for independent inquiry.
However, he said the Bihar cricket body would consider BCCI's proposal.
”Let us apply our mind as to how the probe has to be done because there has been a rot and we have to see whether the rot is limited to IPL or how long the rot runs deep and has any bearing on BCCI,” the senior advocate said.
The court then fixed the matter for hearing on October 7 and assured expeditious disposal of the case.
Earlier, the apex court had restrained Srinivasan from assuming the top post in the event of his re-election until further orders by it.
The court, which had allowed the Board to hold its proposed Annual General Meeting on September 29 in Chennai, had said Srinivasan would have to wait to take charge if elected again as president of the cash-rich body until it decides the matter.