Karachi:ICC President Sharad Pawar has said the sanctity of cricket must be preserved after a meeting with Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Ijaz Butt, in New Delhi on Thursday.
This is a clear indication that the ICC intends to deal with Pakistan's tainted cricketers strongly in case charges against them are proved.
"Had a good meeting with Pakistan Cricket Board chief Ijaz Butt, PCB and ICC agree sanctity of cricket must be preserved. ICC will take ruthless action if spot-fixing are proved, charges of spot-fixing yet to be authenticated by Scotland Yard," Sharad Pawar told NDTV. (Video Special: Pakistan match-fixing storm)
Pakistan players Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Asif and Salman Butt have written to the ICC saying they would defend themselves over disciplinary action against them, their lawyers confirmed this week.
"Reports of Mohammad Amir turning ICC informant are untrue but PCB has promised full cooperation to Scotland Yard," Pawar said.
Pawar rubbished any conspiracy theory involving India. "India has no role in the entire drama," he said.
Butt also said that he did not believe in any conspiracy theory. "I don't believe in any conspiracy theory. I am a businessman and a cricket administrator." The PCB chairman also said Pakistan wants the resumption of cricketing ties with India.
Butt spoke exclusively to NDTV and said that "the players are innocent unless proven guilty".
He further said that it was wrong on part of the British Police to search the Pakistani players' room without their permission and rubbished all reports of Mohammad Amir turning informant by caling the rumours baseless.
Pakistan's tour of England has been overshadowed by newspaper allegations of a betting scam involving no-balls being deliberately bowled in the fourth Test against England at Lord's last month.
The claims, published in the News of the World, led to the suspension of Pakistan Test captain Salman Butt and bowlers Amir and Asif by the ICC.
According to the ICC Code of Conduct, the suspended players have 40 days from receipt of the charges until a hearing takes place, except in exceptional circumstances and with the agreement of both parties.