The charges against tainted cricketers S Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan and Ajit Chandila, along with the 16 arrested and 20 other accused, were dropped by the Patiala House Court in New Delhi in relation to the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2013 spot-fixing case on Saturday. The cause for the drop of charges primarily due to lack of evidence. The trio originally were to face Additional Sessions Judge Neena Bansal Krishna for the hearing on June 29, but the hearing was deferred to July 25. The trio were suspended by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in 2013 after allegations of spot-fixing were surfaced against them during the sixth edition of the IPL, with the accused getting arrested and spending time in jail after that. The cricketers are learnt to have expressed their hope of the BCCI lifting the ban on them in the near future.
“I always had faith in God and my family was always with me. I would like to thank the judiciary for giving justice. I am happy that I will see myself on a cricket ground after 3 long years,” Chandila was quoted as saying after the verdict.
“Thankful to God. Want to get back to training as soon as possible. Want the BCCI to waive my ban so that I can be part of the selection process. Wanted to make sure I don’t get bogged down in life,” fellow accused Sreesanth was quoted as saying. Sreesanth was said to have burst to tears after the verdict.
“We thank all those who prayed for our son. We were all tensed after Court reserved order on plea. We were all praying for him,” Sreesanth’s mother Savitri Devi said.
“It was tough. Some were negative, and some were positive. There were many who believed I would not do such a thing. Obviously it is a very happy moment for me and for my family, and I look forward to playing again,” said Ankeet Chavan after the verdict. ALSO READ: BCCI suspends Sreesanth, Chandila and Chavan
“You can allege anything, but it is for you to prove. For someone who is born to play cricket, it was a very tough time for me. I am sure I will come back to cricket again,” added Chavan.
“Have been informed by the court all have been discharged. Have to read the Court copy but they have been discharged from the case,” a lawyer was quoted as saying outside the court in a statement to the press minutes after the verdict was delivered. ALSO READ: IPL Spot-fixing accused trio arrested
“Charge is on MCoCa against the accused person and all are discharged under MCoCa.
It has been judicially proved and no charges against the accused persons. It has proved that Delhi Court had wrongly accused them,” the advocate representing the accused was quoted as saying.
The Delhi Police had also included underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and his aide Chota Shakeel — both of whom are known to play an active role in the betting market in India — among the main accused in the IPL Spot-Fixing case. The verdict comes days after the Supreme Court-appointed Lodha Panel suspended Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Rajasthan Royals (RR), as well as placed bans on Gurunath Meiyappan and Raj Kundra in a historic decision, which was seen as a great step towards weeding corruption out of Indian cricket. Read more on IPL Verdict
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