IPL 2013 spot-fixing row: Income Tax department begins probe in illegal cash transactions

S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila, Ankeet Chavan and 11 bookies after being produced at the residence of Chief Metropolitan Magistrate at Saket court complex in New Delhi on Thursday © PTI

New Delhi: May 22, 2013

In more trouble for the arrested cricketers and bookies in the IPL spot-fixing scandal, the Income Tax department has begun a probe into alleged hawala and illegal cash transactions and will question them.

The I-T department has got in touch with the investigators of the Delhi police and initiated “tax evasion and suspected hawala dealings” related probe into the latest allegations of spot-fixing.

The department, according to official sources today, will question and record statements of all those who have been booked by special units of both the Delhi and Mumbai police.

Three IPL cricketers–India pacer S Sreesanth, players of the Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan, Bollywood actor Vindoo Randhawa and a number of bookies mainly from Mumbai and Delhi have been arrested after the IPL scandal was busted last Thursday.

The department “will move” for questioning the players and bookies arrested so far in the case and will work in close coordination with other law enforcement agencies working on this case, a department official said.

I-T investigators will also go through the tax returns and transactions of the people who are found to have been involved in spot-fixing to detect unreported income, the official added.

Another financial investigation agency, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), is also expected to proceed against spot-fixers as it is planning to initiate a money laundering probe in this regard soon.

The department had already probed suspected spot-fixing instances last year after a TV news channel sting accused five players of indulging in the malpractice.

“The department had recorded some statements then (last year). Some information was being worked upon and now the I-T has initiated fresh investigations into the clandestine and unreported payments and cash as found out by the police departments in the IPL,” an official privy to the development said.

The I-T department has also sought business records of some hawala dealers based in the national capital, Mumbai, Jaipur, Bangalore and Chennai through its probe units located in these cities.

The department, during a similar probe last year, had detected some suspected instances similar to spot-fixing but the probe in that case could not be concluded as they were many people involved, the official said.

Read more stories on IPL 2013 spot-fixing controversy

Catch live updates of IPL 2013 spot-fixing controversy here