The Board of Control for Cricket in India's Working Committee will meet in Chennai today to discuss its course of action on the spot-fixing controversy that has rocked the sixth edition of the Indian Premier League. Sources say the meeting may be extended till tomorrow. The cricket board will hold a press conference later in the day. BCCI chief N Srinivisan had told NDTV on Friday that the board will come down like a 'ton of bricks' on the players if they are found guilty of spot-fixing.
Here are the 10 latest developments in the case:
The Mumbai Police, which raided the hotel on Friday night, recovered a laptop, mobile phones, iPads and cash worth Rs. 72,000 from the two rooms in which Sreesanth and his friend and alleged bookie Jiju Janardhan were staying. Diaries, written in English and Malayalam, were also recovered from the cricketer's room; cops say several of the entries were made by Sreesanth himself. Sreesanth had independently checked into a five-star hotel in suburban Mumbai on May 13, along Jiju, just two days before their arrest.
The seized items, the police say, could offer vital clues in the spot-fixing case. Cops are also examining footage from close circuit television (CCTV) cameras fitted at the hotel for possible leads. (Sreesanth spends sleepless nights in jail)
The Mumbai Police has also arrested six bookies including Ramesh Vyas, which it says is a "prized catch." Vyas, according to police sources, has links with Sunil Dubai, an alleged mediator between bookies and underworld don Dawood Ibrahim's brother Anees Ibrahim. 32 of the 92 phones seized during Vyas's arrest, in fact, had been used for calls, several which have been traced to Dubai and Pakistan.
The bookie's arrest could help cops track the source of funds which, sources say, could have been routed through hawala channels, which has brought the involvement of the Mumbai underworld under the scanner.
Earlier, sources in the Delhi Police had said that Sreesanth and Ankeet Chavan, his Royals teammate who was also arrested, had been offered Rs. 40 lakh and Rs. 60 lakh respectively. Ankeet was paid some money in advance, and he spent a part of it, sources add. The money is yet to be recovered.
Teams of Delhi Police's special cell have already been sent to Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, and Kolkata to conduct searches and track the money trail in the spot-fixing case. One of them went to the residence of Rajasthan Royals player Ajit Chandila - who was also arrested - in the Delhi suburb of Faridabad for interrogation. (Ajit Chandila's wife asked how he was bringing so much money home, say sources)
The cricketers, sources in the Delhi Police say, were willingly participating in spot-fixing. On Friday, the Delhi Police had said that the trio, during their interrogation, had confessed to spot-fixing in this edition of the IPL. However, these confessions are not admissible in a court of law as they have not been recorded before a magistrate.
Sources now say all matches involving the Royals in this edition of the IPL are being looked at closely. In fact, the match between Rajasthan Royals and Kolkata Knight Riders on May 3 was also to be fixed, according to sources; the tainted trio, though, did not negotiate for the said match.
The IPL management has said that the "harshest punishment will be meted out" to those found guilty. "BCCI working committee will meet tomorrow in Chennai and the course of action will be decided after the preliminary report is submitted," IPL Commissioner Rajiv Shukla said.
The Delhi Police has also interrogated Amit Singh, a former Rajasthan Royals player who the police suspect was the middleman between bookies and players. He, along with 10 bookies, was arrested on Thursday. Nine more have been arrested in Tamil Nadu since.