IPL corruption-free, says chairman
Indian Premier League (IPL) chairman Rajeev Shukla told AFP that this year's edition of the cash-rich extravaganza had been free of corruption thanks to a multi-pronged approach to tackling fixing. In an interview, Shukla said organisers engaged the antigraft unit of the International Cricket Council (ICC), local police and the expertise of a former top cop.
The IPL is the most popular domestic league in the world but has been plagued by controversies since its inception in 2008, with corruption and match-fixing cases often taking centre-stage.
A spot-fixing scandal in 2013 led to two teams - Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals - being sus- pended last year for two seasons. Shukla said an aggressive approach to tackle fixing meant there had been no signs of corruption at the ninth edition of the IPL, which featured 60 matches in 57 days across 11 venues. "All precautions were taken in order to curb corruption and we have been successful in that," Shukla told AFP in Bangalore, before Sunrisers Hyderabad's eightrun victory over Royal Challengers Bangalore. "We engaged the International Cricket Council's anti-corruption unit. We also relied on the expertise of our board's anticorruption unit led by Mr. Neeraj Kumar. "We also spoke to Mumbai police and said that if we need any assistance, they should be ready for it," Shukla added. In earlier editions the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), which runs the IPL, has not always upon the ICC's Corruption Unit.
Kumar is a former commissioner of Delhi police and an ex-joint director of India's leading investigating agency, the Central Bureau of Investigation. He investigated cricket's biggest match-fixing scandal, involving former South Africa captain Hansie Cronje back in 2000 and the 2013 IPL scandal involving Shanthakumaran Sreesanth.
Sreesanth, a Rajasthan Royals bowler, was banned for life along with team-mates Ankit Chavan and Ajit Chandila for their involvement in the spot-fixing and betting scandal. They were arrested in 2013 along with scores of bookies as part of the probe into allegations that players had underperformed in return for cash from bookmakers. called Anti-