New Delhi: DDCA on Wednesday decided to file a defamation case against Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and suspended BJP MP Kirti Azad and other top AAP functionaries for making 'wild and baseless' allegations of corruption against the cricket body.
Kirti Azad and Arvind Kejriwal
The Delhi and District Cricket Association strongly refuted the fresh allegations made by Azad and AAP leaders and said such wild charges have defamed the organisation. Addressing a press conference where all top DDCA officials were present, Acting President Chetan Chauhan said that a lot of 'false' charges have been levelled against the state cricket body and it was forced to take legal recourse against those spreading such disinformation.
Treasurer Ravinder Manchanda said that DDCA will file a defamation case against Kejriwal, Azad and all others who were present at the press conference and made the allegations of corruption and financial embezzlement in the DDCA.
Chauhan said that three agencies are already probing the cases against the DDCA and there was no need for a fresh probe to be initiated by the AAP government.
Continuing its offensive against him, AAP on Wednesday alleged that Arun Jaitley, in his capacity as President of DDCA in 2011, had 'pressurised' the then Police Commissioner to 'close' an investigation involving a cricket club of a bank.
Senior AAP leader Ashutosh released two letters, purportedly written by Jaitley, to former Delhi Police Commissioner B K Gupta and then Special Commissioner Ranjit Narayan, requesting them to 'fairly' deal with the matter and 'close' the case since "DDCA has done no wrong". The party also renewed its demand for Jaitley's resignation in the wake of the 'fresh disclosures'.
The letter to Gupta is dated October 27, 2011 while the one written to Narayan is dated May 5, 2012. DDCA countered the allegations by saying that there was nothing fishy in that case and also circulated letters issued by the bank to substantiate their claims.
Speaking about the Syndicate Bank Club issue, Sports Secretary Sunil Dev said that the then President Arun Jaitley had done nothing wrong by writing those letters. "He (Jaitley) has done nothing wrong. He has all the rights to defend his Association," Dev said. Elaborating on the case, Dev said that Syndicate decided not to field the team in 2005 and one of their employees Bhola Shankar then approached the Bank to take permission if it could field the team.
"The Bank granted the permission in November 2005 but had made it clear that the team should not have non-employees and it would be treated as a private club," Dev said, flashing the letter of the Syndicate Bank.
"The case was given to the Crime Branch and the DDCA also went through their inquiry. Nothing was found. So, all these allegations are baseless," he said. Chauhan said that a number of serious charges like sexual favours being sought by DDCA members in team selection and money being sought in age-group selections have been made in the past few days.
"These are serious allegations being levelled against the DDCA. You cannot just make wild allegations. We need proof also. If there are such charges, we have no knowledge about these. Nobody has ever complained to us," Chauhan said.
"We are aware of the sensitivity of such an issue and we will ensure that their identities are protected. But we should have something in writing to initiate the process. I can assure you that we will seriously enquire into it and if found guilty action will be taken against the official," he said. "There has also allegations that selection committee members have taken money to take money to select players. I am asking give such complaints to us in writing instead of making such wild charges. We will certainly take action," Chauhan said.
Chauhan said it's unfair to make such wild charges and tarnish the image of the organisation without giving any proof. "Wherever there is scope, we will file defamation cases," he said.
He also said that former Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam, who has been appointed by the AAP Government to conduct the probe into the DDCA affairs, has a conflict of interest.
"He is the legal advisor of the Delhi Government and takes fees. How can he conduct the probe?" Chauhan asked.