Allegations of cover up by Srini does not stand proved: SCNew Delhi: The allegations that some crucial facts were suppressed before the Justice Mukul Mudgal committee may at best "raise a suspicion" against N Srinivasan but the charge of attempted cover up by the BCCI
New Delhi: The allegations that some crucial facts were suppressed before the Justice Mukul Mudgal committee may at best "raise a suspicion" against N Srinivasan but the charge of attempted cover up by the BCCI President- in-exile does not stands proved, the Supreme Court said here Thursday.
The apex court, which barred Srinivasan from contesting any BCCI election on grounds of conflict of interest, observed that suspicion can hardly be taken as proof to hold him guilty of the charge of alleged cover up.
"Similarly, the allegation that an effort was made to suppress facts before the Mudgal Committee or that Gurunath (Meiyappan) was shown only as a cricket enthusiast whereas he was a team official, may, at best, raise a suspicion against Srinivasan but suspicion can hardly be taken as proof to hold him guilty of the alleged cover up," a bench headed by Justice T S Thakur said.
"We cannot, therefore, with any amount of certainty, say that the charge of attempted cover up levelled against Srinivasan stands proved," the bench, also comprising Justice F M I Kalifulla, said in its 138-page verdict.
The bench also said that appointment of a probe committee comprising former judges of the High Court to enquire into the allegations of betting and spot fixing cannot be seen as an attempt to cover up as there was nothing on record to show that Srinivasan withheld any incriminating material from the panel.
"It is, in our opinion, difficult to hold that the circumstances enumerated by Mrs Chidambaram (counsel appearing for the Cricket Association of Bihar) proved by preponderance of probability the charge of cover up levelled against Srinivasan," the apex court said.
It also noted there is nothing to show that Srinivasan was possessing any incriminating material which was withheld by him and he had, in fact, stepped aside while the probe was on to avoid any accusation being made against him.
"The probe committee has recorded a specific finding that the allegations of match fixing, spot-fixing or betting were not proved against Srinivasan in the course of the enquiry. That finding was not seriously assailed before us, by Mrs Chidambaram, counsel for the appellant association," it said.