The BCCI also decided to conduct a preliminary inquiry into the incident by Ravi Sawani, former chief of the ICC's Anti-Corruption Unit
New Delhi: Five uncapped Indian players on Tuesday were suspended with immediate effect pending completion of an inquiry as a rattled Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) cracked the whip on tainted cricketers in the wake of a television sting operation which claimed to have exposed corruption in the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL), reports PTI.
BCCI, headquartered at Mumbai, is the national governing body for all cricket in India. The strong action to suspend Mohnish Mishra, Shalabh Srivastava, TP Sudhindra, Amit Yadav and Abhinav Bali was taken after a lengthy tele-conference of top BCCI officials and members of the IPL's Governing Council.
The BCCI decided to conduct a preliminary inquiry into the incident by Ravi Sawani, former chief of the ICC's Anti-Corruption Unit who is now heading the BCCI's newly set-up Anti-Corruption Unit.
"The IPL Governing Council met on teleconference today at 2:30pm and they recommended to the BCCI President for strict action against those players who were found guilty and found suspicious on the television footage shown on India TV," IPL Chairman Rajiv Shukla told reporters.
"Since it also involved matter relating to other matches and previous IPL, it was referred to the President. The president after due consideration has decided to have a preliminary inquiry for which a commissioner has been appointed. Mr Sawani who was the ICC ACSU chief and now advisor will conduct the inquiry and he will submit a report to the Disciplinary Committee," he said.
"Pending inquiry the five players have been suspended from all cricket activities with immediate effect. We will await the report of the preliminary inquiry and proper action will be taken only after that," he added.
Television channel India TV yesterday claimed to have blown the lid off "murky deals" in the IPL among players, organisers, owners and big guns of Indian cricket.
That some tough measures would be taken against the players was evident when the BCCI president N Srinivasan, who is currently at Kodaikanal, made it clear that no player would be spared if found guilty.
He admitted that he was surprised by the sting operation and reiterated the BCCI's zero tolerance towards corruption in cricket.
"We will not tolerate this nonsense. We have zero tolerance on corruption and you will not be disappointed by the action we take," he said.
"Some evidence have been found against some players," he added.
The TV sting operation which was aired at prime time yesterday created a flutter in the Indian cricket establishment prompting the BCCI to react quickly. It took less than 24 hours for the cricket body to take action against the players.
The channel had claimed it had done a sting operation in which many players confessed on hidden camera they get much more than their prescribed auction under the table.
According to the channel, its operation also revealed that spot-fixing is not only prevalent in IPL but also that first class matches are fixed and women played an important role in match-fixing.
The IPL's Governing Council had sought video footage from the TV channel and is understood to have scrutinised the tapes before taking the decision of suspending the players.
Despite orders from SEBI in the past, the MPS group company continued to collect money and publish ads in local newspapers
Capital market watchdog, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has asked controversial MPS Greenery Developers to deposit Rs1,169 crore in an escrow account of nationalized bank. SEBI also barred MPS Greenery from entering the capital market for violating the regulator's provision by collecting money under Collective Investment Scheme (CIS) without proper registration. The amount has to be deposited within 15 days of the order.
MPS is among many companies which had come under the regulator's scanner for accepting deposits under CIS. Earlier Moneylife had reported on how several dubious conglomerates are flourishing in West Bengal and Tripura, thanks to a combination of financial illiteracy and political protection, irrespective of the political parties in power. (Will Rose Valley’s clones, flourishing with CPM’s help, come under the lens now?)
SEBI in its order, dated 11th May, said that, "…MPS Greenery Developers Ltd to deposit with a nationalized bank in an interest bearing Escrow Account, an amount of Rs1,169.39 crore, which it has raised through its collective investment schemes, without obtaining certificate of Registration and in contravention of the conditions imposed by Securities and Exchange Board of India while granting provisional registration…"
MPS Greenery Developers, the flagship company of the MPS group, is based in Jhargram (West Bengal), and deals in agro-products and food processing. In 2000, it had applied for registration under SEBI's Collective Investment Schemes Regulations, 1999. However, in 2002, the regulator rejected MPS's application and ordered it to repay the deposits it had collected from the public after noticing that it raised the money in violation of SEBI circular (dated 24 February 1998) and Delhi High Court's order (dated 7 October 1998) which made it mandatory for all plantation companies to comply with the circular. It had also ordered the company to wind up its scheme.
Further, the company challenged the SEBI's decision in Calcutta High Court. According to the SEBI order, in June 2009, the High Court disposed off MPS's petition but asked SEBI to "reconsider the matter and revisit the issue as to whether the registration as sought by the petitioner company can be granted." However the court also, according to SEBI order, did not remove the restrictions imposed on the company by the SEBI.
In August 2009, SEBI granted MPS a provisional registration as a Collective Investment Management company in accordance with its CIS Regulations, 1999 with certain conditions. This included restrictions on launching any new scheme or on raising fresh money from the investors; even under the existing schemes, unless a certificate of registration is granted to them by SEBI. This provisional registration expired on 20 August 2011.
However, a press note from SEBI says that, "MPS not only failed to fulfil the conditions of Provisional Registration, it also raised money from the public in violation of the conditions of provisional registration and it appears to be still mobilizing money from public. As per information provided by ICRA Limited, the total outstanding balance of funds with the company stood at around Rs1,169.39 crore as on 25 January 2011. Moreover, MPS had issued a newspaper advertorial which wrongly stated that the company is allowed to carry out Collective Investment Scheme activities."
Interestingly, according to the details of the advertorial (published on 30 March 2012 in Kolkata's edition of Business Standard) given in the SEBI order, the company claimed to have 14 lakh of investors, 1.25 lakh marketing members, 4 thousand direct and indirect labourers and more than 6 thousand workers and officers associated with MPS Group. It also said that it was looking to investment Rs30,000 crore in a project, 80% of which will be raised through collective investment schemes.
Apart from ordering the company to return the deposits, SEBI has also directed MPS not to collect any money from investors or to launch any scheme.
The Nifty may strengthen if it manages making higher lows and closes above today’s high
All the Asian indices opened lower on the back of increasing concern over a Greek exit from the euro zone, despite the region's finance leaders declaring they weren't considering that possibility. Sensex and the Nifty opened lower but immediately entered into the positive region and stayed there for most of the trading session today. In our Monday's closing report we had mentioned that the Nifty next support lies at 4,860. We had also mentioned that if the benchmark manages to close above the previous day's high, we may see a possible change in direction. Today the index almost hit this level of support in the initial minutes. From here if the index manages to sustain above today's low and manages to close above today's high, we may see a bounce back. The National Stock Exchange saw a volume lower of 59.45 crore shares
The Sensex opened at 16,147 and the Nifty opened at 4,870. Soon they hit their respective intra days lows at 16,123 and 4,869. The indices hit a high closer to the yesterday high at 16,370 and 4,955 in the noon session. After five days of sequential fall the indices saw a positive closing. The Sensex rose 112 (0.69%) points to close at 16,328 while the Nifty closed 35 points higher (0.71%) to close at 4,943. The advance-decline ratio on the NSE was negative at 870:765.
Among the broader markets, the BSE Mid-cap index rose 0.63% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 0.33%. The top sectoral gainers were BSE Capital Goods (up 3.07%); BSE Metal (up 2.21%); BSE IT (up 1.56%); BSE TecK (up 1.09%); BSE Healthcare (up 0.97%). The lone loser was BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (down 0.64%)
Larsen & Toubro (up 5.41%); Sun Pharma (up 3.20%); Sterlite Industries (up 3.16%); Infosys (up 3.13%) and Hero MotoCorp (up 2.65%) were the key gainers on the Sensex. The major losers among the Sensex 30 stocks were NTPC ( fell 2.94%); Maruti Suzuki (fell 2.57%); ITC (fell 1.35%); Bharti Airtel (fell 1.28%) and GAIL (fell 1.27%)
The Nifty was led by Sesa Goa (up 5.19%); Larsen & Toubro (up 5.18%); Cairn India (up 3.94%); Sun Pharma (up 3.64%) and Sterlite Industries (up 2.96%). The top laggards were NTPC (fell 3.02%); Maruti Suzuki (fell 2.89%); IDFC (fell 1.98%); ITC (fell 1.60%); ONGC (fell 1.17%)
In the international news, the Greek President Karolos Papoulias late Monday proposed a technocrat government but that plan drew weak support from bickering parties, according to reports, as global discussion about the country's removal from the currency bloc mounted. Meanwhile, euro zone finance ministers reportedly dismissed talk of Greece leaving the euro zone as "propaganda and nonsense" on Monday, and signalled that they might be prepared to soften some of the targets of its bailout program.
After the European market opened, the domestic indices went to hit their respective intra-day highs. Most European indices were trading in the green with the German gross domestic product figures came in significantly better than expected. The data showed that Germany's economy grew much more than expected in the first quarter, driven by a surge in net exports. GDP rose by 0.5% from the fourth quarter of last year, and was up 1.2% from the corresponding period last year. At the time of writing the most of the American stock futures were pointing to a sharply higher open.