Corruption in the IPL June 7, 2013

Kundra will be suspended if guilty - Rajasthan Royals

ESPNcricinfo staff

Rajasthan Royals have said the franchise's co-owner Raj Kundra will be suspended and have to "forfeit his shares" if he is found guilty of any wrongdoing. Kundra, who according to Delhi Police has admitted to betting on IPL games, is a minority shareholder and has no part in the running of the franchise, according to a statement issued by Royals' chairman Ranjit Barthakur and CEO Raghu Iyer.

"Mr Raj Kundra is a minority (11.7%) shareholder, and he has no involvement in the running of the franchise. We believe that [he] is a law-abiding citizen and would not act contrary to law. If, however, he is proven guilty, or has breached any regulations, he will be suspended, and will also forfeit his shares," the statement said. "This is a strict governance procedure agreed to by all Rajasthan Royals shareholders, and it is consistent with our zero tolerance approach.

"As a franchise, we have always been clear that the same rules apply to players, management or owners. As such, our actions will be consistent as in the case of the spot-fixing allegations with respect to our players."

Kundra had confessed to betting on IPL matches, including games involving his own team, Delhi's police commissioner had said on Thursday. "Raj Kundra has confessed to betting," Neeraj Kumar, the Delhi Police commissioner, told reporters. "He would place bets through Umesh Goenka, who is a bookie."

However Kundra indicated on Twitter that the media had "misconstrued everything", and issued a statement reiterating that he had done nothing "for which I need to have any regrets".* He would give up his share in the franchise, if proven guilty on any count, Kundra said: "Factually the discussions [in the media] about me are not wholly true. The version is either twisted, misconstrued or exaggerated to make it highly news-worthy.

"I have always remembered that the franchise takes a zero tolerance approach to betting, spot-fixing or match-fixing and I entirely and whole heartedly endorse the same. As far as my alleged own act of commission or omission is concerned, I reiterate that I am totally innocent and in any event I wish to make it abundantly clear that if an iota of wrong doing is finally established against me I would unhesitatingly forfeit my share in the franchise."

Kundra and his friend and business partner Goenka were questioned by Delhi Police over 12 hours. He had "volunteered" to answer the police's queries, and leave his mobile phone with them, Kundra said. "As a shareholder in Royals, the investigating team of Delhi Police deemed it fit to question me. Upon receipt of information that the police had certain questions to be put to me, I as a law abiding citizen volunteered to positively respond to the call. Needless to say, I satisfactorily replied to the queries raised by the police and they accordingly allowed me to leave after my questioning.

"As the case develops, in due process, it may become necessary for the police to question me further. In the interest of justice, it is crucial that I am available in India. As such I have voluntarily retained my passport with the police and have also assured my full cooperation. Delhi Police themselves have had no grievance with regard to this and they have already stated so publicly through the media."

Kundra is now likely to be investigated by the BCCI's committee, consisting of two retired Tamil Nadu High Court judges, which was originally appointed to look into the allegations of corruption against Chennai Super Kings official Gurunath Meiyappan, and the owner companies of Super Kings and Royals - India Cements and Jaipur IPL Cricket Pvt Ltd.

Royals had suspended the contracts of Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila four days after they were arrested for alleged spot-fixing in May, and also filed a complaint against them with Delhi Police. The players were charged by a Delhi Court under Section 409 of the Indian Penal Code, which deals with criminal breach of trust, following Royals' complaint. In Royals' statement, Barthakur and Iyer indicated that they are co-complainants in the franchise's case against the players: "We are working hard as co-complainants to ensure that all information is made available to the authorities."

*17.00GMT, June 7: The article has been updated after Raj Kundra's statement arrived

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Matrix on June 9, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    No one who has debased this sport shold not be spared - regardless of players and the management . Strictest of the strictest punishment must be given to them as deterrant for future.

  • Ashok on June 8, 2013, 23:33 GMT

    If Cricinfo & ESPN seriously wants the Cricket Fans to comment on the articles written related to IPL spot fixing (by their staff members such as Sharda Ugra, Harsha Bhogle & others) then they should publish ALL comments received. It must be recognized that the Cricket Fans also spend their valuable unpaid time to comment on these articles just like the Authors do. Holding comments made by Fans after requesting them, reflects poorly on the democratic rights - "Freedom of expression". I have been a regular commenters in Cricinfo columns for a decade now. But present state of exclusion of individuals makes it futile to waste my time on any more comments until honest comments are published without any discrimination!. Like me, others have also complained about similar exclusion of their comments.

  • Dummy4 on June 8, 2013, 0:14 GMT

    As an ardent cricket follower who occasionally switched to IPL every year, I feel very disappointed on the current revelations. I always expected this tournament to be a fixed affair but wasn't aware of its enormity. To run such a cash rich event in a third world country where check and balance on cash inflow and outflow is poor, this was always on the cards. The same logic applies to private leagues in other Asian countries and the upcoming CPL. But amidst all this, I must appreciate the efforts done by the Indian police as getting hands on such powerful people is not a norm seen in our part of the world. I hope we can move towards a corruption free cricket fraternity because short cuts to money would leave you in trouble more often than not.

  • venkatasubramanian on June 7, 2013, 18:49 GMT

    Posted by vsroc on (June7,2013) Franchise's co-owner of Rajasthan Royals,if found guilty,must be brought to book.

  • Vijay on June 7, 2013, 18:38 GMT

    At least these people have more evidence than India Cements. They have made it clear that he owns only 11% of the shares. And as far as him promoting the team NY appearing the ads, I don't think that is a problem since brand ambassador is different from brand owner. By contrast, India Cements are in a much bigger mess. Guru is the son in law of Srini and that makes that case very hard to handle. If CSK can get away with it, so should RR.

  • Anubhav on June 7, 2013, 18:24 GMT

    They will not be let off so easily.

  • Aman on June 7, 2013, 15:42 GMT

    Nice, now Kundra also is not managing the affairs of franchise. I am sure he is an "Enthusiast" as well. How convenient. When it comes to brand promotion only he and Shilpa show up as owners and act like being the sole owners of the team.

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