CHENNAI/MUMBAI (TIP): The IPL fixing scandal has reached the doorstep of Indian cricket’s powerful boss and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) owner N Srinivasan’s family — quite literally. A day after a report about the police investigating Srinivasan’s son-in-law and CSK CEO Gurunath Meiyappan’s phone conversations with Dara Singh’s son Vindu for possible links with a betting syndicate, a fivemember crime branch team from Mumbai arrived in Chennai on May 23 morning to serve summons on Meiyappan.
They first went to the headquarters of Srinivasan-controlled India Cements, and on finding no one there, stuck a copy of the summons on the door before going to Meiyappan’s home around 2pm to instruct him to present himself before the CB between 11am and 5pm within 24 hours. But with no member of the family available to meet the team, they were initially not let in by the guard; after several phone calls, they were allowed into the compound.
Rama Subbu, the chief security officer of India Cements, arrived soon thereafter and was seen signing a paper which the officers handed him. Strangely though, on his way out, he denied having received any summons on behalf of Meiyappan. Later in the evening, the crime branch is reported to have received a one-page fax from Meiyappan saying he was out of town and seeking time till Monday, with the assurance that he would appear in person. A top police officer said night that no decision had been taken on whether to allow him the extra time.
If the police were to reject such a request, which seems unlikely, Meiyappan could be arrested. The whereabouts of the 35-year-old continued to be shrouded in mystery with speculation placing him variously in Kodaikanal (where he has a holiday home), Kolkata (where CSK plays the IPL finals on Sunday against the winners of the Mumbai Indians vs Rajasthan Royals match) and Delhi (to prepare his legal defence with top-flight lawyers).
Nor is there any word as to where the BCCI chief might be although New Delhi was abuzz with rumours that he would leverage his considerable clout to counter what his supporters consider a “politicallymotivated conspiracy to discredit him”. On May 16, the day Sreesanth and his two Rajasthan Royals were arrested, Srinivasan had said, “One or two bad eggs cannot sully the game,” before stating, on further questioning, “I hope nobody else is involved, but if information comes to BCCI, we will act immediately.”
I was close to Bhajji, Virat: Vindu Dara Singh MUMBAI (TIP): Vindu Dara Singh has told Mumbai police that he knew several players but was close to Virat Kohli, Harbhajan Singh, and Manpreet Gony. Gony, who now plays for Kings XI Punjab, played one-dayers for India while he was with Chennai Super Kings in 2008. Police said they are yet to come across anything that links the three players to Vindu’s betting racket. Vindu also revealed the names of Bollywood celebrities who bet on IPL matches.
He acted as a middleman, placing bets on their behalf with bookies. He said he came in contact with the betting syndicate several years ago through a friend, Anand Saxena, who introduced him to Ramesh Vyas and Shobhan Mehta, both big bookies. He got to know Sreesanth through Ajit Chandila and some Delhi-based bookies.