SC to announce IPL probe panel on Friday
The Supreme Court is expected to announce on Friday afternoon the committee that will investigate the IPL corruption issue. The order will be read out in open court and there will be no hearing of the case; the next hearing is scheduled for September, after the committee completes its investigation.
At its hearing on April 22, the court had asked Justice Mukul Mudgal, whom it had asked to carry out the original investigation, whether he would continue a more empowered and deeper probe into the matter. The Mudgal Committee report, submitted to the court on February 10, had included a sealed envelope that included the names of 13 people who, the committee said, should be investigated further, and this is what the court's new investigation will do. The committee said the identities of the individuals were not being disclosed because of the nature of the findings against them.
The Mudgal report formed the basis for the court's order on March 25 asking BCCI president N Srinivasan to stand down from his post to ensure a fair investigation. The court confirmed, on April 16, that one of the names in the sealed envelope was Srinivasan's, though it did not specify the context.
In agreeing to continue the investigation, Justice Mudgal listed specific agencies whose assistance he would require. They included the former CBI special director ML Sharma, one senior officer each deputed by the Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai Police, and a former India cricketer "of repute and integrity". He had also asked for further assistance from police authorities, the Sports Integrity Unit of CBI's anti-corruption branch and other departments or agencies of the central and state governments "as required".
The case dates back to June 2013, when the Cricket Association of Bihar (CAB) secretary Aditya Verma raised charges of a conflict of interest in the BCCI's original two-member inquiry panel for the IPL corruption issue. A Bombay High Court ruling later termed the probe panel "illegal". The BCCI and the CAB filed petitions in the Supreme Court against this order, with the CAB contending that the Bombay High Court could have suggested a fresh mechanism to look into the corruption allegations.
The Supreme Court then appointed a three-member committee, headed by former High Court judge Mukul Mudgal and comprising additional solicitor general L Nageswara Rao and Nilay Dutta to conduct an independent inquiry into the allegations of corruption against Srinivasan's son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan, India Cements, and Rajasthan Royals team owner Jaipur IPL Cricket Private Ltd, as well as with the larger mandate of allegations around betting and spot-fixing in IPL matches and the involvement of players.