In a setback to BCCI president and ICC chairman-designate N Srinivasan, the Supreme Court-appointed Justice Mukul Mudgal probe committee on Monday found his son-in-law and Chennai Super Kings team official Gurunath Meiyappan involved in betting and passing information about the team in IPL 6 matches to others.

It also concluded that contrary to the assertions of the Srinivasan camp that Meiyappan had no official status in CSK, he was "in fact acting as a team official if not the de-facto owner of CSK".

While calling for a further probe into allegations of betting and spot-fixing against Raj Kundra, part-owner of Rajasthan Royals, the panel also sought a probe into the possible involvement of international stars, including six capped Indian players, whose names figured in conversations between bookies taped by the police.

"The allegations of betting and passing on information against Gurunath Meiyappan stand proved. However, allegation of (match) fixing require further investigation," said the panel, also comprising additional solicitor general L N Rao and Nilay Dutta, in its report to the Supreme Court.

The report also raised dark clouds on CSK's participation in IPL tournament this year by accusing it of breaching the rules by failing to rein it Meiyappan. Meiyappan's illegal acts stood accentuated given his role/position in CSK, it said.

"The committee is also of the opinion that the franchise owner of CSK (India Cement) is responsible for failing to ensure Meiyappan (a team official) had complied with the BCCI Anti-Corruption Code, IPL Operational Rules. IPL Regulations and hence the franchise's actions are in violation of Section 4.4.1 of the IPL Operational Rules and Clause 11.3 of the franchisee's agreement," the panel said.

It left it to the SC to decide what punishment should be imposed for these violations saying this was beyond its terms of reference. "It is for the Supreme Court to decide what action, if any, is to be taken pursuant to this report," it told a Bench of Justices A K Patnaik and F M I Kalifulla.

The inquiry panel also flagged for the SC's attention serious questions of conflict of interest raised against Srinivasan, both inside and outside the BCCI. "While it is evident that the questions raised before us about conflict of interest are serious and may have large scale ramifications on the functioning of cricket, we do not deem it proper to pronounce our opinion on this issue as it is not directly in our terms of reference," it said.

The report, presented to the court by counsel Gautam Bharadwaj and Vidushpat Singhania, said Meiyappan indulged in betting through Vindoo Dara Singh, who in turn was in direct touch with bookies and punters like Vikram Aggarwal.

"Bets were placed by Meiyappan not only in favour of CSK but also against it," it said basing its conclusion on various evidence including telephone intercepts.

It clarified that it was for the concerned criminal courts to determine whether Meiyappan and Vindoo were guilty of the offences alleged against them by various police forces in pending cases.

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Keywords: BCCI president ,ICC chairman-designate, N Srinivasan, Chennai Super Kings , Gurunath Meiyappan , IPL , CSK, Raj Kundra, Rajasthan Royals,international stars, Indian players, solicitor general ,L N Rao , Nilay Dutta,Supreme Court, BCCI Anti-Corruption Code, IPL Operational Rules, IPL Regulations , Gautam Bharadwaj, Vidushpat Singhania,education news