Politics, Cricket, Share market and Gambling in India

Politics, Cricket, Share market and Gambling in India


This, I posted in www.indiainrweacts.com and other forums, but missing. In fact, the www.indiainrweacts.com has removed / blacked out all my postings. Now, I started salvaging or taking out from internet, backup and other sources, as the same pattern is found even today in 2012. Actually, today I searched for my article on “Sex, Drugs, and Cricket” the nexus etc., but I came across this. Therefore, I am posting in www.vedaprakash.wordpress.com withlout any changes.


Indian politics, cricket and gambling: Now a new ugly face of Indian politics having nexus with gambling and underworld is revealed in the recent betting on political parties and the PMs. The close links of Sharad Pawar with cricket mafia and sugar dons and that of Manmohan Singh with bookies and financial gamblers are coming out. The heavy investment in shares and manipulation of Indian economy and the sudden discussion about black money investment in Swiss banks, the BJP’s accusation and the Congress denial etc., are to be understood in the backdrop. The newspapers and TV-channels have started unfolding the gambling and betting of mafia-bookies and changing their so-called “the most-scientific exit-polls”[1].

Psephologists and bookies: The nexus between so-called psephologists and bookies are exposed in the Indian elections[2]. Psephologist or the professionals engaged in studying the election patterns and deviations. They make use of tools like past election’s facts and figures and public opinion polls to arrive at a conclusion. Their scope of job mainly encompasses analysis of aspects like trends in voting, swings in votes; number of votes polled or percentage of total votes polled translating into the number of seats in the government. They also try to find out the answers of questions like how much of percent swing in the votes may lead to change in the government. Hence Psephologists are expected to play a constructive role in any democratic set up, but in India, they are aiding and abetting with the punters, gamblers, underworld dons and spoiling the democracy through the anti-Indian media.

The myth of psephology in the “five-phased elections”: The five-phased polls spreading over a month from April 14 to May 13 2009 has been a political farce, cleverly manipulated by the Congress and its slave Election Commission[3]. When Gopalswamy found, he was not only kicked out immediately, but replaced with three “chamchas” under the guise of secularism. What is the right margin of error to employ?

The experts discuss about errors in the sampling as follows: The most common approach is to use a margin such that in 19 polls out of 20, the gap between the real figure and the poll estimate will be smaller than the sampling error. If the poll samples 1000 people, its sampling error will be 3 per cent either way. With a sample of 2000, the sampling error falls to plus or minus 2.2 per cent. The sampling error is a factor when comparing two polls is larger still, since both polls have their margins of error. Changes in polls from one week to another are even more error-prone than the polls themselves., thus when the polls are phased with gaps and such periods are subjected to heavy propagandas leashed out through media and the ruling Congress misusing the official machineries, where is the political democracy or democratic polity in India?

Gamblers are powerful than voters in choosing PM or the government of their choice: The Indians have been consistently voting to BJP and Congress for the last five general elections. It has been the Congress aiding and abetting with other parties preventing BJP to rule. They used the “dummies” — V. P. Singh, Deve Gowda, I. K. Gujaral. Chandrasekhar and so on and therefore, the lust for becoming a PM has been haunting and daunting the small players or great spoilers and they start bargains with such “devil” sitting in their minds. They want to a PM just for a day, a week, a month or a year — that is all. They are not worried about the so-called ideologies, principles, and
people. Such political lust is varied only in gradation.

Note the media’s discussion on the choice of PMs:

1.  First, they discussed about the powerful and weak PMs.

2.  Instead of “two”, they tried to pit more against the “two”.

3.  The comparison was stretched from “two” to “three” to “four”.

4.  Ultimately, the discussion has been stooped down to the level of who is the worst, horrible and nasty PM.

The trend of elections from 1984 to 2009: In 1984, Advani emerged as PM and the American papers too projected him so. But unfortunately, Indira Gandhi was assassinated and the Congress swept the pools with the Rajiv Gandhi becoming a PM. However, Rajiv was plagued with corruption and thus, in 1989 V. P., Singh and Chandrasekhar were made PMs. However, after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi in 1991, P. V. Narasinha Rao became PM.






1984 8th)




Rajiv Gandhi
1989 (9th)




V. P. Singh
1991 (10th)




P. V. Narasimha Rao
1996 (11th)




A. B. Vajpayee (13 days)

Deva Gowda (18 months)

I. K. Gujaral

1998 (12th)




A. B. Vajpayee (13 months)
1999 (13th)




A. B. Vajpayee (298)
2004 (14th)




Manmohan Singh (335)

The entering of Sonia Gandhi into politics and the rise of BJP coincided and the anti-Congress politicians tried to support BJP. However, the rise of BJP during the period 1991 to 1998 cannot be denied. Only fear of the rise of BJP started the “others” accusing BJP as “communal”, in such ploy, the Congress happily joined without any shame, because, other than Congress, there cannot be any other most-communal party in India, perhaps only next to IUML, MIM, Kerala Congress etc. However, using such secular- communal card, they have been trying to keep BJP out.

Keeping BJP out is anti-Indian undemocratic polity[4]: Any impartial observer, analyst and even common Indian can notice, why all other parties have been ganged up against BJP preventing it from rule? When their number of MPs have been increasing (2 to 181), their period of reign has been increasing (13 days to 13 months to five years), popularity increasing and almost all other parties have aligned with BJP in the pre-poll and post-poll alliances, how other political parties could isolate BJP as communal and they are secular? There is totally wrong in such propaganda being carried out. However, it is stranger to note that BJP has not been pointing out such lacuna, when opportunity came recently in the media many times. In the speeches of Divijaya Singh, Praful Patel, Kapil Sibal, Niteshkumar and others, the point was clearly brought out, but the BJP has failed to take it.

Note: Here, it is not that the “others” are becoming majority to rule India, as they have no common ideologies, but in fact, mostly, they have been the communal, secessionist, anti-National[5], communist and other forces acting against India and Indian interests. Therefore, it is unfortunate that Congress has been supporting such forces and that is why the Communists are emboldened to get ambition of rule India![6].

1% cannot be the difference between Advani and Manmohan: Definitely, when Advani was emerging a powerful PM, the Congress and the media started manipulation. Now the gamblers have joined after psephologists. CNN-IBN psephologist was making blunder after blunder by giving 16% to Advani, 15% to Manmohan etc., as “popular / acceptable PM”. It is not known how the difference could be only one percent. As the groups start realigning and just expecting the real figures, definitely, they are afraid and launched their attack through gamblers picked up by the media and hence the nexus is proved beyond doubt.

If the gamblers, bookies and brokers are powerful than voters, than such politicians could be hanged instead of appreciated as “economic experts” and so on. That behind Manmohan Singh such a devil, monster and evil forces are acting to spoil Indians, then Indians should hang such monsters, instead of placing them on the ruling thrones. In satta market, UPA return near certain[7]: With just a few hours left for declaration of the final results of the 15th Lok Sabha elections, punters in the capital are still giving an edge to the ruling Congress-led UPA government, with a tally of 220 seats, and are confident it will form the next government with a comfortable majority.  Congress improved its tally among bettors who are now giving it 162 seats, against an earlier estimate of 142 during the fourth phase. The rate punters are offering for Congress is 30 paise, which has come down from 63 paise on offer earlier. For UPA government to make a comeback, the punters are offering 32 paise.

This means that for every one rupee you bet on Congress, you stand to earn Rs 1.30, while for UPA government, one stands to win Rs 1.32,” said a punter.

BJP-led NDA is far behind in the game of odds”, you stand to make Rs 3.10 paise if BJP returns 145 seats, while for NDA forming a government, the rates offered are Rs 1.50, which means you gain Rs 2.50 on ever rupee you bet,” he added.

The rates are likely to see a violent swing on the morning of May 16, as the counting begins. “We will be taking bets on parties and candidate till 10am and will close the game after that,” added a source. Insiders also betting on factors like Bihar CM Nitish Kumar and AIADMK supremo J Jayalalithaa being wooed by the Congress. Speculation soared after Nitish’s demand for special status to Bihar on Friday. Punters who were earlier wagering on Congress to take Delhi 6-1, are now saying it is likely to sweep the polls. Expectedly, on Friday the odds against West Delhi’s BJP candidate Jagdish Mukhi climbed to 80 paise, from 35 paise a few days ago. An amount of Rs 1,200 crore is at stake, but a large amount has also been diverted to the Indian Premier League, the punter added.

Satta market: Manmohan still tops list of PM hopefuls[8]: With only two days remaining for the Lok Sabha results, there is heavy betting on the fate of political parties and individual candidates PM Manmohan Singh addresses a press conference in Ludhiana. “Bets worth several thousand crore rupees have already been laid so far, and the tempo is likely to go up in the next couple of days. Mumbai has created a record of sorts with a punter — who is in the real estate business — betting as much as Rs 30 crore on different candidates, parties and their combinations,” a leading bookie told TOI on Wednesday.

  • Manmohan Singh continues to be the hot favourite for prime ministership
    with the bhav (odds) on him being 60 paise. This means that every rupee bet on Singh will fetch the bettor Rs 1.60 if he is indeed re-elected PM. If the bookies’ odds are any indication, L K Advani, who is leading the NDA alliance, has very little chance of becoming PM.
  • The bhav on him is Rs 2.50.
  • In fact, some bookies are also offering bhav of Rs 6 on his quitting politics before May 31.
  • NCP head honcho Sharad Pawar is an extremely dark horse (unfancied contender in betting parlance) with the bhav on his becoming PM being Rs 50.
  • The Congress-led UPA is backed to secure 151 seats at even bhav, meaning every rupee bet fetches an extra in return.
  • For the BJP-led NDA, it is even odds for the party winning 122 seats.
  • There is speculation that Lalu Prasad, Ram Vilas Paswan and Mulayam Singh Yadav may face surprise defeats, “the bhav on such upsets is Rs 3, Rs 1.50 and Rs 1.40 respectively.
  • The AIADMK, led by J.Jayalalithaa, is commanding even bhav for 25-plus seats.
  • Even bhav is also on offer for the CPM securing 35 seats.

Satta Bazaar (satta market) works with IPL Cricket and Elections in India: It is unfortunate that Indian cricket is now a big place for sutta market. Here is the details about how it works in India. According to economic times the satta bazaar estimates that at least Rs 20,000 cr will be wagered on the IPL’s 59 matches over a period of 44
days. People of India are wasting their time to watch all long matches of IPL and helps indirectly to satorias to make big money out of it.

How it works- suppose before the cricket match between A and B, you think that B will win the match (B is known as weaker team). Most of other people guess that team A will win. After balencing of demand and supply, suppose for team A odds is 100:25 and for team B, odds is 100:400. If team B wins you will get 400 Rs without spending your 100 Rs. (you have to first deposit 100 Rs, you will get 400+100= 500 Rs). I

f team A wins you have to loose 100 Rs (you will get nothing). If team A wins, the people who have bet on A will get 25 Rs without spending 100 Rs. It is well known that the practice of satta bazar is illegal in India. I would say, stay away from it, otherwise you will sure loose your money and time. Now, you just replace A and B with Congress and BJP, the secret is out!

The Indians voting for BJP are not fools: Definitely, the Indians voting for BJP are not fools, as they want BJP to come to power keeping the powerful India in mind. Therefore, BJP should convince other Indians, who have not been voting for BJP that they are really for India by action. If they get any opportunity, they should prove by their action that they are for the Indians and prepared to make India a powerful nation with economic prosperity and self-sufficiency.



[1] The unblushing psephologists projected BJP as the largest single party / alliance first and then changed tCongress / UPA. Similarly, first they projected that Jayalalitha was getting more seats, but now they say that DMK is going to sweep Tamilnadu!

[2] As 65.7% of residents kept their date with the ballot, psephologists and bookies were heard giving Congress candidate Pawan Kumar Bansal the third tenure in a row. Times of India dated 14-05-2009:


[3] Vedaprakash, EC becomes slave of Sonia Maino!, see www.indianinteracts.com etc.

[4] Vedaprakash, Keeping BJP out: Is it political democracy?, see www.indianinteracts.com etc.

[5] Vedaprakash, Maoim, the facade of anti-Indian forces: A critical analysis of the “left, centre and right”, see www.indianinteracts.com etc.

[6] Vedaprakash, The Christian-Marxist nexus to install a Communist Government in India, see www.indianinteracts.com etc.

[7] Rahul Tripathi, In satta market, UPA return near certain ,16 May 2009, 0424 hrs IST, TNN ; http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/In-satta-market-UPA-return-near-ce…

[8] S Balakrishnan, Satta market: Manmohan still tops list of PM hopefuls ,14 May, 2009, 1131 hrs IST,TNN:Economic Times, May 14, 2009:


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7 Responses to “Politics, Cricket, Share market and Gambling in India”

  1. vedaprakash Says:

    Satta market: Manmohan still tops list of PM hopefuls
    14 May, 2009, 1131 hrs IST, S Balakrishnan, TNN

    MUMBAI: With only two days remaining for the Lok Sabha results, there is heavy betting on the fate of political parties and individual candidates PM Manmohan Singh addresses a press conference in Ludhiana.

    “Bets worth several thousand crore rupees have already been laid so far, and the tempo is likely to go up in the next couple of days. Mumbai has created a record of sorts with a punter – who is in the real estate business – betting as much as Rs 30 crore on different candidates, parties and their combinations,” a leading bookie told TOI on Wednesday.

    Manmohan Singh continues to be the hot favourite for prime ministership with the bhav (odds) on him being 60 paise. This means that every rupee bet on Singh will fetch the bettor Rs 1.60 if he is indeed re-elected PM.

    If the bookies’ odds are any indication, L K Advani, who is leading the NDA alliance, has very little chance of becoming PM. The bhav on him is Rs 2.50.

    In fact, some bookies are also offering bhav of Rs 6 on his quitting politics before May 31. NCP head honcho Sharad Pawar is an extremely dark horse (unfancied contender in betting parlance) with the bhav on his becoming PM being Rs 50.

    The Congress-led UPA is backed to secure 151 seats at even bhav, meaning every rupee bet fetches an extra in return. For the BJP-led NDA, it is even odds for the party winning 122 seats.

    There is speculation that Lalu Prasad, Ram Vilas Paswan and Mulayam Singh Yadav may face surprise defeats – the bhav on such upsets is Rs 3, Rs 1.50 and Rs 1.40 respectively.

    The AIADMK, led by J Jayalalithaa, is commanding even bhav for 25-plus seats. Even bhav is also on offer for the CPM securing 35 seats.


  2. vedaprakash Says:

    In satta market, UPA return near certain
    Rahul Tripathi, TNN May 16, 2009, 04.24am IST

    NEW DELHI: With just a few hours left for declaration of the final results of the 15th Lok Sabha elections, punters in the capital are still giving an edge to the ruling Congress-led UPA government, with a tally of 220 seats, and are confidant it will form the next government with a comfortable majority.

    Congress improved its tally among bettors who are now giving it 162 seats, against an earlier estimate of 142 during the fourth phase.

    The rate punters are offering for Congress is 30 paise, which has come down from 63 paise on offer earlier. For UPA government to make a comeback, the punters are offering 32 paise. “This means that for every one rupee you bet on Congress, you stand to earn Rs 1.30, while for UPA government, one stands to win Rs 1.32,” said a punter.

    “BJP-led NDA is far behind in the game of odds — you stand to make Rs 3.10 paise if BJP returns 145 seats, while for NDA forming a government, the rates offered are Rs 1.50, which means you gain Rs 2.50 on ever rupee you bet,” he added. The rates are likely to see a violent swing on the morning of May 16, as the counting begins. “We will be taking bets on parties and candidate till 10am and will close the game after that,” added a source.

    Insiders also betting on factors like Bihar CM Nitish Kumar and AIADMK supremo J Jayalalithaa being wooed by the Congress. Speculation soared after Nitish’s demand for special status to Bihar on Friday.

    Punters who were earlier wagering on Congress to take Delhi 6-1, are now saying it is likely to sweep the polls. Expectedly, on Friday the odds against West Delhi’s BJP candidate Jagdish Mukhi climbed to 80 paise, from 35 paise a few days ago.

    An amount of Rs 1,200 crore is at stake, but a large amount has also been diverted to the Indian Premier League, the punter added.


  3. vedaprakash Says:

    सेक्‍स, ड्रग्‍स, क्रिकेटर्स और मैच फिक्सिंग का नया मामला

    Source: dainikbhaskar.com | Last Updated 09:25(09/05/12)

    नयी दिल्‍ली.नयी दिल्‍ली में पकड़ी गयी जिस्‍मफरोशी की दलाल ने पूछताछ में स्‍वीकार किया है उसकी इस साल श्रीलंका में होने वाले टी-20 वर्ल्‍ड कप में क्रिकेटर्स को अपने जाल में फंसा करके मैच फिक्‍स करने की थी।

    पुलिस सूत्रों के अनुसार क्राइम ब्रांच ने 50 साल की विमल मारवाह अपने सहयोगी अजय कालरा को चार अप्रैल को पकड़ कर उनके पास से 275 ग्राम कोकीन बरामद की थी। उसने बताया कि क्रिकेट पर सट्टा लगाने वाले कुछ लोगों की मदद से वह श्रीलंका जाने के प्‍लान पर काम कर रही थी । ये सट्टेबाज कोलम्‍बो में कुछ पार्टियों का आयोजन करते जहां क्रिकेटर्स को बतौर मेहमान बुलाया जाता और उन्‍हें सेक्‍स के लिए लड़कियां उपलब्‍ध करा दी जातीं । इस खातिर के बदले उनसे मैच फिक्स कराके वारे न्‍यारे किये जाते।

    पेशे से प्रशिक्षित अध्‍यापक और पंजाब के रोपड़ की रहने वाली मारवाह को उसके पति ने छोड़ दिया जिसके बाद उसने जुर्म की दुनिया में 2004 में कदम रखा । मारवाह इससे पहले बंगलादेश में खेली गयी ढाका प्रीमियर लीग में देखी गयी थी । संदेह है कि उसने इस प्रतियोगिता में अपनी काली करतूत को अंजाम दिया है । आईसीसी को भी इस बारे में जानकारी है और वह अपने स्‍तर पर कार्रवाई कर रहा है।

    Crime Branch police to clear the 50-year-old Ajay Kalra Marwah its affiliates hold a four-April they found 275 grams of cocaine was seized. He told me that betting on cricket, with the help of some people he was working on plans to go to Sri Lanka. The speculator who organize parties in Colombo as a guest called the Cricketers and girls for sex would be made available. About go after them instead of fixing matches for this separation are.

    Trained teacher by profession and a resident of Ropar in Punjab Marwah left her husband in 2004 after he stepped into the world of crime. Marwah before been played in Bangaldesh Dhaka Premier League was viewed.


  4. vedaprakash Says:

    Arrested pimp had planned to ‘influence’ cricketers
    HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times
    New Delhi, May 08, 2012
    First Published: 23:23 IST(8/5/2012)
    Last Updated: 23:23 IST(8/5/2012)

    She used to provide a package deal on drugs and sex, but, as it turns out, that wasn’t all this 50-year-old female pimp had on offer. More than a month after she was arrested by the Crime Branch, she has also confessed to her alleged involvement in setting-up ‘honeytraps’ to ‘influence’

    cricketers, thanks to her proximity to a slew of bookies operating in the Capital.
    “Vimal Marwah, who was arrested along with one of her businessman associates last month, has disclosed that she had also attempted to use her ‘contacts’ among bookies to book ‘some girls’ to fly with them to Sri Lanka, where they would fix matches in the T20 World Cup to be held later this year,” said a senior Crime Branch officer.

    Marwah and her associate Ajay Kalra had been arrested on April 4 with 275 grams of cocaine. Flight tickets to Sri Lanka had also been recovered from them, police claimed.

    Police said that Marwah used to charge at least R30,000 from her client(s). The expenses included the services of a woman and a gram of cocaine.

    Sources claimed the arrest came following an input from the Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) of the International Cricket Council.

    Senior Crime Branch officers, however, claimed the tip off had been their own.

    “She told us that the purpose of her trip was to be part of a party organised at a casino in Colombo. Later, she confessed that she had used her proximity to her clientele, most of which was composed of bookies, to organise subsequent events where cricketers were also supposed to be on the guest list,” the officer said.

    A qualified teacher who used to teach at a school in Punjab’s Ropar, Marwah had entered the world of crime in 2004 — eight years after being abandoned by her husband.


  5. vedaprakash Says:

    The Indian Premier Leak


    IT’S THE open secret no one wants to acknowledge: the IPL is not about cricket. The ugly controversy surrounding Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor and IPL chief Lalit Modi — over Tharoor’s friend Sunanda Pushkar owning 4.9 percent free sweat equity in the Kochi team that Tharoor helped put together — is merely a warning sign pointing to a much deeper dirt pit that comprises in equal parts big money, politics, glamour, greed, sex, drugs and intense backroom jostling.

    The reason the Tharoor-Pushkar controversy snowballed at the speed it did is less to do with the facts of the case than this unsavoury combination that underpins everything to do with the IPL these days. Unfortunately, much of the news about these seamy dealings is still merely in the realm of gossip and speculation: murmurs in a baroque gossip bazaar. Yet, recounting these murmurs is enough to outline the shape of things. After all, remember, the murmurs are all emanating from insiders. But to put things in perspective, first the primary question: What are the facts of the Tharoor- Pushkar case? With the IPL announcing that it would invite two new franchises to join the league, a few months ago Tharoor actively began to promote the idea of a Kochi team and helped cobble together a consortium of investors — Rendezvous Sports World — to sponsor the team. As a cricket enthusiast and MP from Kerala, Tharoor was presumably motivated by his zeal to bring home turf Kerala into the lucrative circle of the IPL. Ordinarily, the fact that a female real estate professional close to him was given 4.9 percent free equity in the team would have raised absolutely no eyebrows. After all, prima facie, there was no allegation of any money transaction or public funds being misused, nor had Tharoor extended any ministerial favours for the franchise. So why the disproportionate stink?

    Why did the Tharoor fracas threaten to disrupt Parliament? Why did news of it reach Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in far away Washington and overshadow his talks with President Obama on Afghanistan and the Nuclear Liability Bill? Why did Tharoor have to spend two-anda- half hours on Thursday morning, April 15, with one of the Capital’s top corporate lobbyists and troubleshooters (who works for one of the richest men in the world) seeking help? After all, as one of the protagonists said, “It’s common knowledge that other politicians running across aviation, agriculture road transport and the Opposition, are minting money and have undeclared stakes in every cricket pie. Why has there been no uproar about all that?”

    The answer is, wittingly or unwittingly, Tharoor had disturbed equations in the dirt pit. Rumours are, when the Kochi team won the bid, many carefully laid plans by others were laid to waste. To understand this, for a moment, return to the facts: the other stakeholders jostling for a franchise were the Sahara Group, owned by Subrata Roy; the Pune team sponsored by Saif Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor and relatively lesser-known businessmen; and an Ahmedabad team sponsored by the Adani Group, one of India’s top infrastructure companies.

    Subrata Roy, of course, outplayed everyone by making an astronomical bid of $370 million, prompted by his numerologist. Pune was out of the running. That left Kochi and Gujarat running neck and neck.

    So what made Lalit Modi suddenly twitter innocuously last weekend about Sunanda Pushkar and how Tharoor had allegedly asked him not to inquire into who she was — the kindle that lit the fire stack? It’s common knowledge that Modi and Tharoor are friends, so why this sudden and ugly fall out? (Friends of Tharoor say that Modi is misusing a bantering remark the minister had made to him over a drink. Tharoor is, indeed, set to marry Pushkar but is waiting for a divorce from his Canadian wife Christa Giles to come through and, therefore, has been loath to make his relationship public. This is why when Modi asked him in a nudge-nudge sort of way, “So, who is Sunanda Pushkar?” Tharoor had laughingly evaded the question saying, ‘Don’t ask me that as yet.’ So what made Modi turn that into something sinister?)

    The answers lie muddied in the pit and snake back to earlier events. When Lalit Modi lost the elections to the Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA), he not only lost a fiefdom, he lost much-needed immunity. With a Congress government replacing the BJP in the saddle, his political patronage was blown and more than 20 cases were opened against him, relating to tax evasion and financial irregularities when he was at the helm of the RCA. He desperately needed new armour, and a firm foot back in the Board for Control of Cricket in India (BCCI). The rumour mills say that Lalit Modi had approached Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and was assured by the latter that if he could ensure that the Gujarat team wins the franchise and brings both glamour and money to the state, he’d be made the secretary of the Gujarat Cricket Association (of which the chief minister is the president).

    At first, Modi tried hard to make friend Tharoor back off so that the Adani bid could be more competitive. He even tried to mislead the Kochi group by telling them that all they needed to win the race was $299 million. The consortium, however, was reportedly alerted by former Indian skippers Sunil Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri that Modi was actually seeking $322 million. The Kochi team was also told that they would face many technical hurdles to block them from winning the bid.

    But instead of backing off, the Tharoor- mentored Kochi consortium bid an astronomical Rs 1,500 crore and won the franchise. Powerful men — potential investors and politicians — across the country flew into a tizzy. Allegations began to fly fast and thick. The Kochi consortium alleges that Modi offered them a $50 million bribe to abandon their bid after they had won the Kochi franchise. They refused. The desperation in different quarters soared.

    The rumour goes too that, at one point, Modi made an urgent call to Tharoor saying things had gone beyond him and if Tharoor didn’t back off, Modi’s life would be in danger. But Modi was not the only angry man. Rumour also has it that Tharoor finds himself politically isolated for other reasons.

    Such is the jostling for stakes in the IPL money-glamour-influence pie, a very senior UPA cabinet minister from Maharashtra and a former classmate of Tharoor’s, had called the latter asking him to get Rendezvous Sports to offload its stakes in favour of an owner of a Maharashtra- based white goods giant. (In a serpentine twist, this businessman had apparently first paid Modi money for a chance to invest in the Ahmedabad team. When that franchise bid was foiled, he wanted to invest in the Kochi team.) However, apparently driven by some sense of chivalry to the original consortium, Tharoor refused.

    Soon after, a senior functionary of the BCCI sent Tharoor a similar message in favour of the corporate giant. Tharoor again declined. He had just made himself another enemy within the world’s richest cricket board.

    The further irony is that, according to highly reliable sources in the cricketing management fraternity, the 4.9 percent free sweat equity Sunanda Pushkar is being pilloried for does not even belong to her. A mere .5 percent is reserved for Pushkar. Disturbingly, the rest belongs — off paper and on trust — to two iconic cricketing giants, one of who is still playing for the Mumbai IPL team. This free equity is the quid pro quo they demanded for helping put the Kochi team and its promoters together — not a rank corruption perhaps in the larger scheme of things, but certainly an impropriety.

    One has a greater sense of the fantastical world of the IPL and what passes for right and wrong when you take into account the fact that Tharoor is probably right in saying the equity will not benefit him and is commensurate with what Pushkar was bringing to the table as a highly attractive and successful marketing professional. Yet, he is caught in a twilight zone where he is honourbound and cannot entirely disclose why he is saying this. (This might be why small white lies seem to be sprouting around them. Pushkar claimed in a written statement to the media that she had been approached by Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) to assist them as a marketing consultant. While it seems true that top-line event management professional Karim Murani associated with KKR is a friend of hers, KKR co-owners Shah Rukh Khan and Jay Mehta, actor Juhi Chawla’s husband, have denied the claim outright.)

    BUT MONEY, influence and ambition are only one set of ingredients in the IPL dirt pit. Each match is accompanied by a swirling constellation of late-night parties and beautiful women that moves with it across cities. Drugs and sex, then, seem to be another equally potent mix driving rivalries and events in the world of IPL.

    Back to murmurs in the rumour bazaar then. It appears a thwarted franchise bid is not the only reason Lalit Modi set out to discredit the Kochi team in the hope that he could have it disqualified. He has other personal reasons for declaring war on Tharoor.

    Sources in the rumour business say that the night before Tharoor met the city’s most influential troubleshooter, he and his Man Friday, Jacob Joseph, had put together what they claimed were documents that would sully Modi’s reputation. A few days earlier, newspapers had carried front-page stories linking a beautiful South African model, Gabriella Demetriades, with Modi. It seems Modi no longer wanted the association and had requested Tharoor’s office, as Minister of State for External Affairs, to deny Gabriella a visa. Piqued by the backroom pressure and anxiety Modi had been visiting on his boss and the Kochi team, Tharoor’s aide Jacob Joseph refused to entertain the request and not only expedited the visa but apparently taunted Modi’s aides about it. The story goes that when Modi found out, he called Tharoor in a rage at night and slammed the phone down, vowing vendetta.

    Modi has consistently told the media that he does not know Gabriella and has nothing to do with her. Unfortunately for him, however, he seems to have left an e-mail trail when he wrote to Joseph for help about denying the visa. These mails contravene his claim about not knowing Gabriella because in his hurry to shunt her off, he apparently forgot to delete his chain-mail exchanges with her. “In the mail to her, Modi clearly tells Gabriella that he will handle the visa and that there should be no problems. So why did he change his mind? Is there a fear that Gabriella would spill some beans he would not be able to handle?” says a senior BCCI functionary, who is aghast at the Modi-Tharoor row and the way it has blown craters in the reputation of a tournament that, till recently, was being touted as the world’s fastest growing sports show.

    There are other pieces in the counter-campaign being prepared against Lalit Modi. Among them is the assertion that Modi was not only booked for drug abuse in college but is involved in a court case for cocaine abuse as recently as 2006 in the UAE.

    The April 15 meeting with Delhi’s top corporate troubleshooter also seems to have paid other dividends for Tharoor. Support has started pouring in from many quarters. The office of Subhash Chandra Goel, Chairmain Zee Telefilms, for instance, has offered clinching evidence of Modi’s involvement in a lottery scandal in India’s northeastern states for which a court case has been going on for years. (It’s in keeping with the dirt pit that Goel has, of course, been at loggerheads with Modi ever since his Indian Cricket League (ICL) was scuttled by Modi and his IPL with the backing of the BCCI, even though the ICL had been first off the block.)

    “It’s become a free for all,” BCCI top man Shashank Manohar told TEHELKA in disgust over a brief telephonic conversation. “The IPL is now becoming the dirty underbelly of Indian cricket.” Manohar — who has been named as IPL co-chairman — insisted every issue would be discussed and debated at the BCCI-IPL sub-committee meeting scheduled next week and asserted that he would happy if all franchisees opened up their stakes for review in a transparent manner.

    As this story went to press, in fact, news began to trickle in that the Income Tax department had launched a raid on the IPL headquarters in Mumbai.

    This would probably be worrying news for almost everyone involved in the IPL. To open up everyone’s stakes is equivalent to yanking the lid off a can of worms. In the grimy mess that would ensue, Sunanda Pushkar’s 4.9 percent would probably look like a child’s playtime snack.

    Sources in the Intelligence Bureau (IB) say that when one of the richest men in the country says he owns a team through personal wealth, it is something of a lie. The stakes have apparently been bought through his company with shareholders’ money, which makes the Rs 43 crore his team lost last season an unlisted liability for public shareholders.

    But as the cliché goes, this is merely the tip. There are also rumours that a key protagonist and IPL official has holdings not just in Rajasthan Royals, but also in Kings XI Punjab and KKR. IB officials add that this functionary also has a stake in a media company associated with the IPL and owned by a relative.

    There are other lateral movements afoot — unfortunately motivated more by a need for secure pastures it seems, than a consideration for the game. KKR skipper Saurav Ganguly, for instance, has apparently approached fellow Bengali Subrata Roy for possible absorption in the Sahara Team. A top KKR official says Ganguly has also advised many of his fellow players to jump ship. The rumour mills say Yuvraj Singh has also sent a similar message to the Sahara chairman.

    But these are relatively minor moves. The bazaar gossip says the editor of a major media house, whose son had recently come under the radar of corporate intelligence bodies, is also trying to get into the IPL franchise racket.

    In the middle of all this, a third angle is brewing silently that threatens to queer things for those batting themselves sixers through the IPL. This involves the former BCCI and ICC president, Jagmohan Dalmiya, who has been camping in Delhi for the last few days.

    Dalmiya, totally sidelined within the BCCI and left watching the IPL circus from the wings, is now determined to force the IPL to share its profits with the state cricket associations — thereby divvying up the money pie. Currently, IPL — which earns more than Rs 700 crore a year — pays a pittance of Rs 4 crore to each state association. Dalmiya wants to raise that to around Rs 30-40 crore. He has enlisted several politicians cutting across party lines in this campaign. By getting the state cricket associations to back him, the wily gamester could get a chance to reinsert himself into the big game.

    The pity is nothing it seems is above board with the IPL anymore. Even spectators have a scam going on. Last month, Income Tax officials were alerted across the country to find out whether IPL officials were fudging tickets and avoiding tax. Their findings were in the affirmative. In a demeaning instance of ‘you scratch my back, I scratch yours’, it appears corporates were buying loads of lower denomination tickets yet accessing box seats that come with complimentary liquor and food. This was helping IPL organisers to avoid paying entertainment tax.

    With the IPL having stooped so low, it might really be time to blow the whistle officially. The irony is that this must have been the last thing on Lalit Modi’s mind when he tweeted about Shashi Tharoor and Sunanda Pushkar last weekend. But his tweet has indeed become a whistle.


    From Tehelka Magazine, Vol 7, Issue 16, Dated April 24, 2010


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