Chandila says he's 'falsely implicated'
Ajit Chandila has submitted, during his ongoing bail hearing in a Delhi court, that he has been "falsely implicated" in the IPL spot-fixing case. Chandila's counsel also added that his client, currently in judicial custody, had no link with either Dawood Ibrahim or his aide Chhota Shakeel, among India's most wanted criminals. The two are also charged in the case and are alleged by police to be controlling a cricket betting syndicate.
"There is no link with the alleged perpetrators Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Shakeel... I am a sportsperson," advocate Rakesh Kumar, appearing for Chandila, told additional sessions judge Dharmesh Sharma, according to PTI. "Two of the other sportspersons [Sreesanth and Ankeet Chavan] have been granted bail. I was playing for Rajasthan Royals. I am a successful cricketer. They are falsely implicating me. I was performing well. This is a false case just to implicate me."
During the arguments, Chandila's counsel told the court that provisions of the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) were "mischievously added" by Delhi Police against the accused so that they cannot get bail. Chandila's lawyer argued that police had not been able to satisfy another trial court - which had granted bail on June 10 to Sreesanth and Chavan, along with 17 others - on this count.
While granting bail then, the judge had said Delhi Police had not produced enough evidence to charge the players under MCOCA, a special law passed by the Maharashtra state government to tackle organised crime syndicates and terrorism, which contains far stricter provisions compared to the Indian Penal Code. However, after naming the three cricketers among 39 people in a 6000-page chargesheet at the end of July, Delhi Police had lodged a plea with a Delhi trial court to cancel Sreesanth's and Chavan's bail. The two were then issued bail notices by the court, and would have to respond, giving reasons as to why their bail should stand; it was understood then that the investigation had progressed to a point where the police believe the MCOCA law can be invoked.
Delhi Police had charged the players along with the others under this law in their chargesheet, as well as under the Indian Penal Code, accusing them of criminal conspiracy, cheating and dishonesty. The police had told the trial court the accused were "part of a larger betting syndicate" controlled by Ibrahim and Shakeel, and "knowingly abetted the operation of this international organised crime syndicate".
Public prosecutor R Mohan will advance his arguments on the bail pleas of Chandila and other accused on August 30, the next date of hearing.