In a telling blow to the BCCI, the Supreme Court, has in very strong words, asked N. Srinivasan to step down as Board chief. Saying that Srinivasan must go to ensure a fair probe to the IPL betting and match-fixing scandal, the Supreme Court said: "It's nauseating that N. Srinivasan continued as BCCI chief, he should go if cricket has to be cleaned." Srinivasan's son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan of Chennai Super Kings has been indicted of betting in an inquiry report. According to IPL rules, Chennai can face expulsion if charges are proved.
Meanwhile, Srinivasan has refused to comment, saying he will "study" the court order. The hearing comes up again on March 27.
The top-10 developments of the case:
1) The Indian Premier League betting and match-fixing case dates back to June last year when the Cricket Association of Bihar secretary Aditya Verma raised the issue of conflict of interest in the formation of a BCCI commissioned two-member inquiry panel. BCCI-appointed a panel of retired judges (T Jayaram Chouta and R Balasubramanian). The duo found "no evidence of any wrongdoing" on the part of Chennai Super Kings' Gurunath Meiyappan and Rajasthan Royals co-owner Raj Kundra. Gurunath is the son-in-law of BCCI president N. Srinivasan
2) Verma filed a PIL in the Bombay High Court which termed the probe panel "illegal". Verma says how can a panel instituted by N. Srinivasan clear Gurunath and Kundra?
3) BCCI and the Bihar association then file petitions in the Supreme Court against the Bombay High Court order. Bihar contended that the Bombay High Court could have suggested a fresh mechanism to look into the corruption allegations.
4) In October, the Supreme Court appoints a probe committee to be headed by retired judge Justice Mukul Mudgal. Additional Solicitor General L Nageswara Rao and Nilay Dutta are the other members of the inquiry panel. The apex court gives the panel four months to submit its report.
5) Meanwhile, Gurunath admits to betting in his statement to the Mumbai Police. His recorded statement was part of the Mumbai Police chargesheet.
6) On February 10, the Mudgal committee submits its findings to the Supreme Court. Two reports are filed. The first, signed by retired judge Justice Mudgal and Additional Solicitor General of India L. Nageswara Rao, asked the court to "decide the further course of action" because the probe committee did not have the power to impose punishment. Another supplementary report, signed by Nilay Dutta, a vice-president of Assam Cricket Association and a member of the IPL Governing Council, said: "This should not be misinterpreted to mean that the report suggests that the Hon'ble Court would decide on the punishment or penalty to be imposed."
7) The inquiry committee also submits a sealed envelope that contains "sensitive" information pertaining to some top Indian players. Coming across "many allegations of sporting fraud," the Mudgal committee says the sealed envelope should be opened only by the judges.
8) In its 33-page response to the Supreme Court on March 7, the BCCI requested the bench not to divulge the contents of the envelope. In its submission, BCCI said: "Speculative and baseless charges against leading cricketers have already been made by unscrupulous news channels under the guise of "Sting Operations". Speculation is rife that the sealed cover contains names of some current member of the National Team. The Hon'ble Court would kindly take steps to staunch any further damage to the image under reputation of innocent cricketers and the BCCI by passing appropriate orders and thereby render justice."
9) In March, Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni slapped a Rs 100-crore defamation case in the Madras High Court against two private media houses saying that they were broadcasting "defamatory, scandalous and malicious reports" linking him to bookies. The Madras High Court restrains the media houses. One of the media houses says it will take on Dhoni in the Supreme Court and join the case filed by Bihar association.
10) On March 25, Supreme Court tells N. Srinivasan to step down as BCCI president to ensure a fair probe of the Indian Premier League fixing and betting scandal. "Why is Srinivasan sticking to his chair? If you don't step down, then we will pass the order," says court, adding: "Srinivasan should go if cricket has to be cleaned."