Kings XI Punjab pacer Shalabh Srivastava, who reportedly demanded Rs 10 lakh to bowl a deliberate no-ball during an IPL game, said that he was innocent and that the audio clip that a TV channel is playing is doctored.
Speaking to a TV channel, Shalabh said: "I fail to understand whatever is being said about spot-fixing. Also if they (India TV) are showing all the video clips, why aren't they showing the clip where allegedly I am demanding Rs 10 lakh. The voice in that telephonic conversation is not mine. It is very easy to frame anyone with a doctored audio clip."
He also said that the reporters who conducted the sting met him as sports managers who claimed to bring better offers from other franchises. "I must have met them 7-8 times and that too because they claimed to be sports managers. They claimed that they can get us better offers from other franchises. And it's not only me. They must have met around 50 players from the IPL and I must have spoken to approximately 15 players about them."
"All of them were doubtful about them as they always talked about fixing and prodded the players about how much were they being paid by their team owners. All of us were doubtful because contrary to what they claimed (that they were sports management guys), they also touched controversial topics," he added.
Shalabh has also said that he will take legal action against the TV channel. "I will definitely file a case against them."
Another player from Deccan Chargers, TP Sudhindra is also under the scanner for having been caught on camera accepting bribes for a domestic match. Although there is no proof that the 28-year-old pacer from Madhya Pradesh has taken money during the course of IPL, he however was caught on camera asking Rs 40,000 to bowl a no-ball during an Indore T20 League match.
As per the deal, the player who took 40 wickets for his state in the 2011-12 season, did bowl a huge no-ball off the second delivery of his first over. Yet surprisingly, Sudhindra was allowed to play for Deccan Charges and he took a wicket as well from his three outings in the tournament. Sudhindra has played 27 first-class matches and has 108 wickets to his name with a best of 7/48.
While the IPL Governing Council has called an emergency meeting today, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has taken a grim view of the matter and has asked for the footage of the said video.
"Some TV channels have been reporting a story pertaining to alleged unacceptable practices by players participating in the IPL. The BCCI will not tolerate any violation of regulations and any act of corruption," BCCI's secretary Sanjay Jagdale said in a statement.
"The complete footage of the 'sting operation,' will be sought, and examined thoroughly. The GC will meet on an emergent basis to review the footage and take appropriate strict action," he added.
BCCI chief N Srinivasan said,"We will ensure that the integrity of the game is protected. BCCI believes in the integrity of the game. We will take the strictest possible action. We will have to have the tapes and the moment we see it, whoever is the player, we will take very very strict action."
"If there is any truth in it... It is a fact that we will take strictest action. Even if it means suspending the player immediately. But (that has to be) based on some evidence and fact, for which I have asked the COO of IPL Sundar Raman to request for the tape," he said.
Srinivasan said he has asked the Governing Council of the IPL so that in the morning there will be a tele-conferencing of the governing council to go into this matter. "We will act to show that this is not tolerated."
"IPL, we believe is clean. We have got the Anti-Corruption Unit covering it. They are the in-change of the security. We have got Ravi Swami, who was heading BCCI's Anti-Corruption Unit to take it up for us."
"People can make allegations. But if there is any shred of evidence, we will take action.
Former IPL chairman Lalit Modi, however, tweeted that the allegations were baseless