The spot-fixing scandal in Indian Premier League (IPL) has taken a new twist with the demand for resignation of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) chief N Srinivasan and termination of IPL franchisee Chennai Super Kings (CSK) gaining ground after the franchise's alleged Team Principal Gurunath Meiyappan was arrested on Friday in connection with the betting scandal.
The Mumbai police on Friday arrested Gurunath Meiyappan, son-in-law of the BCCI chief N Srinivasan and the Team Principal of CSK, after small-time actor Vindoo Dara Singh, who was arrested on Tuesday for his alleged links with bookies connected to spot-fixing, reportedly told the investigating team that he has been in touch with the CSK CEO for a few months.
CSK, owned by India Cements, which is headed by BCCI chief N Srinivasan, could be terminated from the IPL even before the final match against the Mumbai Indians (MI) on Sunday if one is to go strictly by the rule book of the IPL.
There is a provision for termination of a franchise in the Clause No 12.3 of the BCCI-T20 rule book if "the franchise, any franchise Group Company and/or any Owner acts in any way which has a material adverse effect upon the reputation or standing of the League, BCCI-T20. BCCI, the Franchisee, the Team (or any other team in the League) and/or the game of cricket."
Former IPL Chairman Lalit Modi has insisted in an interview with NDTV that N Srinivasan must resign and CSK should be scrapped following the arrest of Gurunath Meiyappan for his alleged involvement in betting scam.
"I am extremely disappointed and hurt by the fact that this is happening right now. For me an owner getting involved in betting, forget fixing, just betting, it's totally unbelievable. There should be no leniency if that be the case," Modi told NDTV.
"Mr. Srinivasan should immediately resign, if not resign he should be thrown out, immediately. And all those who have allowed him to do what he has done, they have to take moral responsibility, not only moral responsibility, their co-conspirators, they need to resign too."
Sensing the danger of being terminated from IPL, India Cements, the owner of CSK, gave out a statement that Mr. Gurunath "is neither the Owner, nor CEO/Team Principal of Chennai Super Kings. Mr. Gurunath is only one of the Members (Honorary) of the Management Team of Chennai Super Kings."
However, Mr Modi told the television channel that Srinivasan's son-in-law Gurunath is the actual owner of the CSK and demanded that the finals between the Chennai franchise and MI be scrapped in order to maintain integrity of the game.
"Well I am not too concerned about the finals. I am more concerned about the integrity of the tournament going forward. If the IPL has to survive and move on to Season 7 and move on to build its credibility, then we got to do the right thing," Modi said when NDTV asked if the Chennai team and the finals should be scrapped.
"We cannot afford to say 'oh let this final happen and then we will talk about it' or 'we will talk about it after the final is over, let Srinivasan continue'. I think the buck needs to stop here and needs to stop now. An action must be immediate," he continued.
"As far as the final is concerned, now take the top 3 teams or top 4 teams in the league, in point-wise an let's do another Semi-Finals Round and lets do the finals again, if they are so concerned about the final. But as far as I am concerned, Rajasthan Royals and Mumbai Indians already played their Finals today and Mumbai Indians won...But very categorically, Chennai Super Kings must be scrapped."