IPL COO Raman let off due to lack of 'cogent evidence'
The Lodha Panel has taken no action against former IPL chief operating officer Sundar Raman in connection with the 2013 IPL spot-fixing scandal on grounds that there was a lack of "cogent evidence" against him.* One of the tasks set by the Supreme Court for the Lodha panel during its inception was to examine Raman's role in the 2013 spot-fixing scandal and, if applicable, impose a suitable punishment on behalf of the BCCI.
The Lodha panel's report addressed seven allegations against Raman and said there was lack of "cogent evidence" to establish any direct or indirect involvement in betting or any other wrongful activity.
"On a close and careful independent look at the evidence and material collected by the Investigating Team, the Committee is of clear opinion that neither Allegation Nos.1 and 5 nor Allegation Nos.2, 3, 4, 6 and 7 stand substantiated justifying any action against Sundar Raman. His direct or indirect involvement in any betting or otherwise wrongful activities has not been establishment by any cogent evidence," the report stated.
However, the report said the investigation had arrived at the convlusion that he, "appeared to be guilty of not sharing the information about corruption in IPL, purportedly furnished by Sh. YP Singh [the ICC ACSU chief] orally/informally to him with the BCCI authorities which might have helped in preventing the larger corruption issues in the game which stood demonstrated in May, 2013 (IPL Season of 2013)".
Raman was named as Individual 12 in the Mudgal report, which said he "knew a contact of a bookie and had contacted him eight times in one season". When questioned by the Mudgal panel, Raman "admitted" that he "knew" a contact of the bookie, but claimed to be "unaware of his connection with betting activities". The report stated Raman "also accepted" that he had received information about "individual 1 and individual 11 [that is, Gurunath Meiyappan and Raj Kundra] taking part in betting". He said he was "informed" by the ICC-ACSU chief that this was not actionable information. Raman accepted that this information that he received about two team officials being reportedly involved in betting "was not conveyed to any other individual" by him.
Raman had been associated with the IPL since its inception; he had been the right-hand man of Lalit Modi and, after his removal in 2010, worked closely with N Srinivasan. He stepped down from his position in November last year, prior to appearing before the Lodha committee.
*06.00GMT, January 5: This story has been updated