MUMBAI - Pakistan umpire Asad Rauf and the son-in-law of the Indian cricket board's (BCCI) president were charged by Mumbai Police on Saturday in a betting scandal surrounding the Indian Premier League Twenty20 tournament.
Gurunath Meiyappan, son-in-law of BCCI president N. Srinivasan, was arrested in May after being quizzed by police probing illegal betting on the Twenty20 league. A total of 22 people have been charged for gambling, cheating and fraud, the police said. "The chargesheet runs into 11,609 pages and was submitted in the honourable court this afternoon," Himanshu Roy, joint commissioner of Mumbai Police, told reporters in Mumbai.
The 57-year-old Rauf, who has officiated 48 tests and 98 one-day internationals, was removed from the Champions Trophy panel in May by the International Cricket Council following reports of his involvement in the scandal. The BCCI last week banned former India fast bowler Shanthakumaran Sreesanth and another player for life on spot-fixing charges.
BCCI chief Srinivasan has distanced himself from Meiyappan, who was a top official with the IPL's Chennai franchise. "This is a matter for Mr Gurunath Meiyappan to deal with. If he is chargesheeted, the law will take it own course," Srinivasan told reporters in Chennai.
Meanwhile, Rauf claimed innocence and said he had no link with bookies. "Discussion and information are two separate things. We can discuss things with people but sharing information is different. I will get in touch with my legal adviser and then I can tell you," Rauf said.
Asked if he knew Bindu Dara Singh, who was also named in the chargesheet, Rauf said: "I have thousands of friends but that doesn't mean that if my friends do something, then I have anything to do with that. "Let them prove something. I mean, if it was the case that I have taken a favour or a gift or money was given to me... you got to prove allegations," said Rauf, who was named a 'wanted accused' along with 15 bookies from Pakistan.
Rauf said he would explain his stand to ICC's Anti-corruption unit. "I have been an employee of ICC. ICC has their own Anti-corruption unit. Like police they also investigate. When they call me, I will answer them through my legal adviser. I have done five IPLs and my decisions have been 100 per cent correct. I will answer to ICC regarding these allegations," Rauf said.