Modi to sue English boss over rebel league claim

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Suspended Indian Premier League chief Lalit Modi is to sue England's cricket chief for libel in London, reports said on Thursday.

Updated: June 17, 2010 06:34 IST
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New Delhi:

Suspended Indian Premier League chief Lalit Modi is to sue England's cricket chief for libel in London, reports said on Thursday.

Modi is suing over an email by England and Wales Cricket Board chairman Giles Clarke alleging that the flamboyant Indian boss was planning to set up a new rebel Twenty20 league involving English county teams.

In the email sent to the Indian cricket board last month, Clarke said that Modi's moves were "detrimental to Indian cricket, English cricket and world cricket at large".

Modi has denied the charges and said late Wednesday that he had started libel proceedings against Clarke in the London High Court, according to the BBC.

"Mr Modi complains of defamatory allegations made in an email sent by Mr Clarke on 2 May 2010 to Shashank Manohar, the president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India and others," the BBC quoted a Modi statement as saying.

"In his email Mr Clarke alleged that Mr Modi was planning to destroy world cricket by setting up a rebel league in contravention of ICC regulations.

"Mr Modi utterly refutes Giles Clarke's claims and has made this clear in detailed submissions made to the BCCI on 31 May 2010."

Modi, who is currently in Europe, was unavailable for comment.

Clarke said Modi had held a secret meeting with officials from Lancashire, Warwickshire and Yorkshire in New Delhi on March 31 to discuss the proposed new league without the knowledge of the cricket authorities concerned.

The BCCI, which owns the IPL, suspended Modi on April 25 and ordered a probe into allegations of corruption, tax evasion and money-laundering in the tournament after the government launched an investigation.

Modi was also removed as a BCCI vice-president and as chairman of the T20 Champions League, a separate club tournament organised jointly by India, Australia and South Africa.

Modi, 46, had run the IPL as a virtual one-man show since its inception three years ago, making it one of the most lucrative sporting events in the world.

The charges against Modi include rigging IPL bids, holding proxy stakes in teams and receiving kickbacks in return for broadcasting deals.

His troubles began in April when he revealed the ownership details of a new franchise set to join the tournament in 2011, which embarrassed a high-profile government minister who then had to resign.

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