The BCCI Anti-Corruption Unit head Shabbir Hussain Shekhadam Khandwawala disclosed that during the recently-suspended IPL, possible corruptors plugged an accredited cleaner at Delhi’s Feroz Shah Kotla ground for doing “pitch-siding,” which aids ball-to-ball betting. A dedicated cleaner was observed using the time interval between real match play and live TV coverage to assist in ball-by-ball betting, also known as court-siding or pitch siding, during one of the IPL games in New Delhi. Pitch-siding is the process of sharing information from athletic competitions in order to gamble or place bets directly.
“One of my ACU officers apprehended a suspect and reported him to Delhi Police. ACU filed a complaint with the Delhi Police, despite the fact that the suspect managed to escape with his two cellphones “Hussain, a former Gujarat Police Director General, told PTI on Wednesday.
“We are grateful to Delhi Police for apprehending two more people from the Kotla on an ACU tip-off in a separate incident.”
During the IPL match between Rajasthan Royals and SunRisers Hyderabad on May 2, the Delhi Police detained two people with bogus accreditation cards.
“These individuals were able to gain entry to Kotla on two different occasions. The fugitive disguised himself as a maid. We do, though, have all of his information since he was hired for the tournament. The specifics of his Aadhar Card have been handed over to Delhi Police “”Says Hussain,” he says.
“I’m sure he’ll be apprehended in a day or two. He’s a little fry making a couple of hundred or a few thousand dollars “According to the ACU’s president.
He did admit, however, that lower-level employees could be used by a larger syndicate because hotels are closed due to COVID-19’s bio-security controls.
“…the modus operandi of crime changes as times and events change. “However, we are ready for it,” Hussaid said.
So, how did cleaning crews end up on the ACU’s radar?
“He was standing alone in a secluded area (within Feroz Shah Kotla premises), so one of our officers approached him and asked, ‘What are you doing here?’
“Main apne girlfriend ke baat kar raha hoon,” he said. (I’m on the phone with my girlfriend.)
“My officer then instructed him to call the number he was speaking with before handing over the phones. The man bolted from the scene just as he was going through the contents of his phone “Hussain mentioned the incident, but did not say when it happened.
What was also more surprising was that he was wearing the IPL accreditation badge, which is issued to all class IV workers, including bus drivers, cleaners, porters, and others, during the tournament.
“It was one of Delhi’s evening matches. He was in possession of an I-card. He also had two cellphones, which sparked suspicions “he said
“We wanted to alert the Delhi Police because the information he might be providing may be passed on to someone more powerful among bookmakers. The Delhi Police Department reacted positively, and two people were arrested the next day.”
During the 29 games that were held, Hussain also reported that the ACU received no complaints of corrupt approaches being made to players or support staff participating in the IPL.
“Obviously, with a bio bubble and no audience around, it becomes a little easier to handle so there are no dubious characters in close contact (face to face meetings with players). When there’s a crowd, it’s tough to keep track of everybody “”Says Hussain,” he says.
He also said that the hotel where the SunRisers Hyderabad team stayed during the Mumbai leg had three individuals with dubious past records whose names were in the ACU database. They were unable to make contact with the players, however.
“We contacted Mumbai Police as soon as we received details. The Mumbai Police Commissioner took prompt action, and those three were apprehended by the Mumbai Police “Added he.