Hindustan Times (Jalandhar)
Suspicion on top official, business as usual for Board
MUMBAI: From spot-fixing allegations, corruption charges and foreign exchange violations to money laundering cases, the IPL has seen everything. In any setup, the buck stops with the top boss. When the chief himself is under the scanner, the credibility of the institution takes a big hit.
Given that the Supreme Court is looking into the conduct of IPL COO, Sundar Raman, the least the Board could have done was ask him to abstain from functioning till the final verdict of the Justice RM Lodha committee.
In the report by Justice Mudgal committee, Sundar Raman figures twice. Mentioned as individual 12 (Sundar Raman), the report remarks: “This individual knew a contact of a bookie and had contacted him eight times in one season. ... The individual also accepted that he had received information about Individual 1 (G Meiyappan) and Individual 11 (Raj Kundra) taking part in betting activities but was informed by the ICC-ACSU chief that this was not actionable information. This individual also accepted that this information was not conveyed to any other individual.”
For not taking any action on receiving information about betting in his league, Justice FMI Kalifullah had come down hard on Raman. “You did not think it fit to talk to somebody in BCCI on receiving information... As silent spectator you are watching the fun involving celebrities. What will you do when son-inlaw of the BCCI President is indulging in illegal activity like betting? You have to rise above everything on the occasion. You have done nothing. You should have informed that Meiyappan was indulging in betting.”
The question is how does the BCCI ignore such allegations and allow someone to head its high-profile body. To maintain its credibility, wouldn’t it have been fair for the BCCI to have asked Raman to step aside till the final judgement of the Lodha panel.
SC had set an example when N Srinivasan was asked to step aside pending probe. However, the Board refused to take any measure which would have improved its image in the public eye. On ethical grounds, Raman should have excused himself till he got a clean chit.
That in Sunday’s all-important IPL Governing Council meeting Raman was an active participant did little to inspire confidence in BCCI’s new regime. He has been the only one right from the start of the IPL.