BCCI's ACU takes note of Salem Spartans' owner case

Salem franchise owner M Selvakumar got an FIR registered at the CCB - 1 police station last year claiming he was duped by Rs 6.10 crore on the pretext of buying shares in a CPL team
Salem Spartans logo
Salem Spartans logo(Photo | X @SpartansSalem)

CHENNAI: Hours after this daily broke the news of an owner of the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL) team getting duped by more than Rs 6 crore, it is understood that the Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) of the Indian cricket board (BCCI) has taken cognizance of the issue and may launch an inquiry into it. "A formal inquiry could be launched into the issue," a BCCI's ACU source told this daily.

It should be noted that Salem Spartans' owner M Selvakumar got an FIR registered at the CCB - 1 police station in Chennai last year claiming he was duped by Rs 6.10 crore on the pretext of buying shares in a Caribbean Premier League (CPL) team.

In the FIR, Selvakumar named four suspects/accused including domestic cricketers Robin Bist and Akash Sumra. The former was the coach of the Salem team while the latter played for the franchise last season. Bist was again bought by the franchise this season as a player during the auction held early this year despite the FIR (in December 2023).

"The league is run by the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) so the state unit along with those involved including the victim owner and players could be questioned. Once the ACU understands the matter completely, it may issue notices to the parties concerned," added the source.

Sources at the TNPL, however, said that the league hasn't received any official intimation in this regard either from the owner or other parties involved in the case and hence currently it's not in the position to do anything.

The matter is under trial in the lower court in Chennai. Selvakumar in the FIR claimed that Robin and Akash introduced him to Satish Kumar and Nitin Khokar saying the duo owns shares in a CPL team. The owner also claimed that Satish threatened him with dire consequences when he demanded his money back.

Even as Bist's name is mentioned in the FIR as a suspect/accused, Selvakumar told this daily that the cricketer's name found a place in the report for witnessing purposes. Bist too was shocked when questioned about his name in the FIR and claimed he only introduced Satish and Nitin to the Salem franchise owner.

Selvakumar in the FIR stated that Satish and Nitin claimed to him that they owned 27 per cent shares in a CPL team and the company owning the team had a valuation of Rs 30 crore of shares. The duo also lured him to make a total investment of Rs 22 crore with an initial investment of Rs 6 crore to acquire 25 per cent shares.

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