Disciplinary panel probing Lalit Modi to finalise its findings

Published: 25th April 2013 02:10 PM  |   Last Updated: 25th April 2013 02:10 PM   |  A+A-


A Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)-appointed disciplinary committee, looking into the alleged financial irregularities by suspended Indian Premier League Commissioner Lalit Modi, is likely to complete its investigation by this month end, a move being objected to by the defence.

The three-member Committee met for two consecutive days in the national capital -- April 22 and 23 -- for over two hours each during which it heard versions of Modi's legal team and BCCI counsels, official sources said.

The Committee has decided April 29 as the next day of hearing on which it is likely to complete its proceedings, they said.

A defence team representing Modi, who is staying in London due to security threats, has sought more time to cross-examine witnesses and give more evidence to the Committee.

"We have sought more time to cross-examine witnesses and give more proofs. Moreover, there are versions of witnesses running across 12 fat volumes and other submissions of over 25,000 pages which needs to be perused by the Committee. How can the panel finalise its findings in three sittings?" asked Mehmood M Abdi, General Counsel and Constituted Attorney of Modi.

He has also accused the committee of not accepting Modi's reply to a show-cause notice issued to him in connection with the probe as it was late.

"The panel did not accept Modi's response as it was 34 hours late. We tried to explain our position but to no avail. It's a sham," Abdi claimed.

Modi was asked to give reply before April 20. But Abdi said, "due to his dental sittings, Modi could not give his reply on time."

The panel, comprising Arun Jaitley, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Chirayu Amin, started hearing the matter in July, 2010, two months after Modi was suspended as IPL Commissioner due to alleged irregularities.

"We are hearing all versions. The Committee is following its procedures. It has given sufficient time to the concerned parties to give their point of view," a panel member said.

Modi is facing about 15 charges of irregularities including the accusation of having proxy stakes in Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises among others.

Modi has also offered himself to be available for cross examination via video link from the second week of May.

"He has offered to be available for cross examination after second week of May as he is having dental sittings regularly. The panel should give us more time," said Abdi suggesting that the defence team should be given more time to cross-examine all witnesses and provide more facts in the case.

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