CSK, Rajasthan Royals banned from IPL for 2 years

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 24, 2018
Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals suspended from IPL for two years. File Photo

Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals suspended from IPL for two years. File Photo



RM Lodha-headed apex court panel says misconduct by team officials has damaged public faith in IPL, BCCI, and the game

A Supreme Court-appointed panel today banned Rajasthan Royals, winner of the inaugural edition of the Indian Premier League, and two-time winner Chennai Super Kings from the IPL for two years on charges of betting by their owners.

The panel also suspended RR co-owner Raj Kundra and then CSK Team Principal Gurunath Meiyappan (also the son-in-law of then Board of Control for Cricket in India President N Srinivasan) from all cricket-related activities for life.

Addressing the media, Justice RM Lodha, former Chief Justice of India, who headed the panel, said: “Cricket is bigger than individuals or body of individuals than financial loss that may be caused to a few players or franchisees.”

The IPL, under the aegis of BCCI, is one of the richest T20 cricket leagues in the world. The order raises questions on fate of IPL. The BCCI will have to decide on the fate of the players of the two teams and whether it will conduct a fresh auction for having more franchisees.

The three-member Lodha committee declared that Kundra’s and Meiyappan’s conduct had “adversely affected the image of BCCI, and the league (IPL) as also the game of cricket and brought each one of them disrepute.”

Binding on BCCI

Lodha said that the committee was mandated by the Supreme Court so the purity of the game remains a central element. The apex court also said that the decision of the panel will be binding on the BCCI.

The affected parties can appeal to a higher Bench of the apex court.

“The proved misconduct by the team officials of CSK and Rajasthan Royals has damaged the faith of the public in the IPL, BCCI, and the game of cricket so much so that any untoward incident in any game is now attributed to corruption in cricket,” he said.

Replying to a query on the fate of the players of CSK and RR, Lodha said that the players will not be attached to these franchises, which have been suspended. Some of the big names playing for CSK are MS Dhoni, R Ashwin, Suresh Raina, and for RR are Shane Watson, Steve Smith and Ajinkya Rahane.

Lodha said the committee felt it needs to further probe the role of IPL COO Sundar Raman. It will evolve a mechanism to deal with issues regarding conflict of interest. The committee will also recommend measures to streamline the functioning of BCCI, including issues such as elections and eligibility of candidates.

In a statement, Jagmohan Dalmiya, President of the BCCI, said, “…it (the BCCI) would give its observations after the entire report is read and a collective decision is taken.” Dalmiya said the BCCI is committed to ensuring transparency, accountability and cleansing the sport in order to restore the faith and confidence of millions of cricket-loving people in the game, in general, and IPL, in particular. The IPL Governing Council is likely to meet on July 19 to decide on the course of action.

Sources close to N Srinivasan, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, India Cements, said he has nothing to comment on the order as it is not about him, nor about the company. It is about CSK, which is a separate company. It is up to CSK to take appropriate action based on its legal advisors.

While Raj Kundra and his officials were not available for comment, Kundra tweeted, “Many inaccuracies. Have requested for a copy of the judgement-obviously very shocked and disappointed.”

Published on July 14, 2015

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