Wednesday, 29 July 2015

IPL spot-fixing: Retired Commissioner Neeraj Kumar's BCCI role in spotlight

The Delhi court's verdict dropping all charges against the three players has brought back the spotlight on former Delhi Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar.

Incidentally, it was under Kumar's leadership that Delhi Police had arrested the trio.
The retired IPS officer is the chief advisor to the Board's Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) replacing Ravi Sawani. In fact, murmurs have already started in the board circles about how well Kumar will perform in his role after Delhi Police's investigations have fallen flat with Patiala House Court discharging the trio along with 33 others.

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Neeraj Kumar appointed BCCI anti-corruption consultant

Neeraj Kumar, the former Delhi Police commissioner, has been appointed as a consultant for the BCCI's anti-corruption unit (ACU). Kumar was appointed by the IPL governing council, which met in New Delhi on Monday. Mumbai and Pune were also confirmed as venues for the first two IPL playoff games.

"Neeraj Kumar has been appointed for one year as a consultant to the ACU. He will be involved in improving ACU's operations and awareness programmes," Rajiv Shukla, IPL governing council chairman, told ESPNcricinfo.

It is understood that the former commissioner will set in motion an improved system to prevent players from being trapped by bookies. BCCI officials also believe that Kumar's vast experience in cracking cricket corruption-related cases during his tenure with the police will aid the BCCI.

Kumar had led the investigations during the 2013 IPL corruption scandal that saw the arrests of several players and bookies. He had also played a large role in the 2000 match-fixing investigation, the first major fixing scandal in the game. Kumar is expected to work closely with ACU chief Ravi Sawani.

During the 2013 corruption scandal investigation, Neeraj Kumar had been dissatisfied with the BCCI's vigilance against corruption. "They should maintain better vigil. Most of this stuff happens quite openly: people are seen sitting with undesirable people and people do come to know about some strangers meeting somebody. So they have the list of the suspects, they should go after them," Kumar had said in an interview to ESPNcricinfo in July 2013.

"It would not be fair to say corruption is a rule and honesty an exception. There are a few rotten eggs, which should be spotted and be weeded out." Said Kumar.


Time to weed out ‘bad’ players from Cricket.

The game of cricket is too good to be spoilt and it is actually time to weed out some “bad” players from the sport, says Delhi Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar whose team is aiming to file the charge sheet in the IPL spot-fixing scandal before he hangs his boots end of next month.

Mr. Kumar, who has been engaged in several high profile cases in his career spanning over three decades, feels that the spot-fixing scandal was a murder of faith of millions of cricket lovers.

“After this case surfaced I actually started getting into the history of this game and came across what Australian captain Bill Woodfull told English Team Manager Pelham Warner in 1932 when bodyline attack was the order of the day between the two arch rivals.

“This game is too good to be spoilt. It’s time some people got out of it,” Mr. Kumar quoted Woodfull and added, “similarly, I echo the same view that the game is too good to be spoilt and it is actually time to weed out some bad players from the game." 

 This game, cricket was known as “gentleman’s game” but it is no longer the same. The spot-fixing scandal will remain fresh in the memory of people as they will not be able to get over the cheating they had to face at the hands of some of the cricketers.

I am afraid that love associated with the game may go forever as the sweet gestures of players may now be viewed with suspicion by people.

The stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) was duly applied in the case, and I feel that it was a decision taken rightly after consulting legal experts.