SC favours more time to investigate spot-fixing

Court to decide if joint probe can be ordered

The Supreme Court on Thursday favoured giving investigators from the Mumbai and Delhi Police more time before deciding if a joint probe could be ordered into the IPL spot-fixing and betting case.

A bench of Justices Gyan Sudha Mishra and Madan B Lokur were apparently not convinced with a plea made by a Mumbai educationist contending that separate investigations showed lack of coordination and created hurdles.

The court asked petitioner Sharmila Ghuge to file an additional affidavit after watching the developments in the investigation.

“The investigation has got wide ramifications. You cannot go on monitoring it on daily or rather, hourly basis. Give them some time to investigate,” the bench said. The court fixed the matter for further hearing for July 23.

“So far, you (petitioner) have not been able to satisfy us that the separate investigation is creating trouble,” the court observed.

In her PIL, Ghuge contended that unless the allegations of spot-fixing, match-fixing and betting pertaining to IPL-6 or its earlier versions were looked into by the CBI, the probe was likely to be hampered by “highly influential people and politicians.”

She claimed there was “mismanagement and lack of co-ordination” between the Mumbai and Delhi Police.

The petitioner claimed that the role of the BCCI was under a shadow of doubt for numerous reasons, and there has been no prompt action by the BCCI in the required direction.

“There is a need that the present offence should be investigated by the CBI as this is an inter-state crime spread across the country,” the PIL said.

The petition has made Central, Maharashtra and Delhi governments, their police agencies, as well as the CBI and the BCCI as respondents.

In the IPL spot-fixing case being probed by the Delhi Police, 26 people, including Rajasthan Royals players Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan and several bookies, have been arrested. Sreesanth, Chavan and 17 others were granted bail on June 11.

The court had also rapped the Delhi Police for invoking the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act against the accused alleging they had acted at the behest of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Shakeel.

The Mumbai Police arrested actor Vindoo Dara Singh, Gurunath Meiyappan, son-in-law of BCCI President N Srinivasan, and six bookies. They were also granted bail by a local court.

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