CSK and RR to return in 2018
BCCI, which had suspended CSK and Rajasthan Royals franchises for 2 years, decided against terminating the franchises, thereby ensuring a 2018 comeback. Meanwhile, the BCCI will float tenders and invite bids for two new teams to replace CSK and RR in the 2016 and 2017 seasons, to maintain the eight-team format. However, it was not specified if the 2018 tournament will include 10 teams.
On 16 May, Rajasthan Royals cricketers Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila were arrested by Delhi police on charges of spot-fixing during IPL 2013. Eleven bookies were also arrested. On 21 May, Mumbai police arrested Vindoo Dara Singh who allegedly had links with bookies and was in touch with CSK team principal Gurunath Meiyappan. On 24 May, Meiyappan was arrested on charges of betting.
Gurunath Meiyappan, the son-in-law of former BCCI Chief N.Srinivasan was the team principal of CSK. He later declined this and called himself a mere cricket enthusiast. Further probe though established him as the CSK team official.
Based on questioning by Delhi police, BCCI suspended Rajasthan Royals co-owner Raj Kundra who confessed to betting on IPL matches. BCCI's two-member panel found 'no evidence of any wrongdoing' by Kundra and Gurunath. Bombay HC acting upon PIL filed by Bihar Cricket Association dismissed the findings of BCCI's panel calling it illegal and unconstitutional. BCCI then moved to Supreme Court challenging Bombay HC's order.
On 8 Oct 2013, SC appointed a three-member committee headed by former HC Chief Justice, Mukul Mudgal to probe corruption allegations in the IPL. In Feb 2014, Mudgal panel found Meiyappan guilty of betting and passing on team information during IPL-6 and said it required further investigation. On 28 March 2014, SC asked Srinivasan to step down as BCCI president to ensure fair investigation.
Mudgal Panel was joined by Sourav Ganguly 8 June as an expert on cricketing affairs. On 13 Nov, Mudgal panel submitted its final report to the SC. On 17 Nov, SC revealed the contents of the Mudgal report. It found BCCI Chief Srinivasan not guilty of either betting or fixing. The report established that Meiyappan was involved in betting and so was Raj Kundra.
Raj Kundra admitted to betting in the IPL. Kundra being a UK citizen claimed that he believed betting to be legal in India.
The SC barred Srinivasan to contest BCCI elections and struck down a controversial clause in BCCI's constitution which allowed board officials to have a commercial interest in the IPL. SC also appointed a fresh 3-member committee headed by former Chief Justice of India, RM Lodha to decide on the quantum of punishment for Meiyappan and Kundra and the respective franchises, if necessary.
Today, the SC appointed-Lodha Committee announced the quantum of punishment for Gurunath Meiyappan, Raj Kundra and the related IPL franchisees today. As per the verdict, CSK and Rajasthan Royals franchises have been suspended for 2 years from the time of the pronouncement of verdict. Gurunath Meiyappan and Raj Kundra have been suspended for life from all cricketing activities.
The Chennai Super Kings had filed a plea in Madras HC against Lodha Committee's decision which had been rejected on grounds that CSK was not a legal entity.
The Delhi Court today discharged all 36 accused in the IPL-6 spot fixing case. Prominent IPL players - S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankit Chavan, who were out on bail, also feature in the discharged list. The charges were dropped due to lack of evidence. All three players became emotional after hearing the judgement and hoped that they could return to the game soon
BJP politician Subramanian Swamy registered a plea in the Madras High court confronting the decision of the Lodha Committee regarding the IPL match-fixing case. He also claimed that the previous IPL commissioner Lalit Modi had been affecting the path of trial in Bombay High Court and the Supreme Court. Swamy wants the two suspended teams to feature in next season's IPL.
PepsiCo has sent a notice to the Indian Cricket Board announcing its intent to withdraw its IPL title-sponsorship; it had paid Rs.396 crore to become the sponsor for the period 2013-17. The reason behind this is said to be the controversial spot-fixing case, which had brought 'disrepute' into the game. Decision on this will be taken in BCCI's working committee meeting on 18 October.