From the Editor's Desk

May 2010

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Best Regards

Sayantan Chakravarty


Cricket remained by far the top story in April. The Indian Premier League (IPL) continued to entertain millions in its third season but the manner in which the extravaganza has been managed and run came into question. Pandemonium broke out via the Twitter and in no time turned into a full-scale war of accusations. Parliament was stalled by a belligerent opposition, a minister was removed, and an angry Government ordered searches and raids on every IPL franchise as allegations of kickbacks, shady deals and tax evasion mounted. Ten years after the match-fixing saga had first broken (April 2000), propriety and ethics in Indian cricket were in question once again.

It is no sin to mentor a cricket franchise, after all politicians and maharajahs have long patronized and mentored cricket establishments. But it turned out that Minister Shashi Tharoor had also introduced a special friend to the Kochi franchise, and she had been given a stake worth a significant amount. Surely only his clout would have ensured so. And Modi, till the other day hailed as one of the world’s most admirable young sporting administrators at 46, was sacked as chairman and commissioner of the IPL. By no means was either exit glorious.

Questions have since cropped. The source of the money that has been pumped into the IPL is under scrutiny. Why did substantial sums have to make their way through tax havens like British Virgin Islands, Isle of Mann and Guernsey Islands (all part of British overseas territories) and through Mauritius? Why was the money layered through offshore shell companies? Are some of the stakeholders fronting for more powerful people and their wealth? Is the money clean?

The haze is lifting, but slowly. It is becoming clearer that collectively Indian cricket has messed up big time once again. Not since the Jagmohan Dalmiya days have things been in such a crisis. This time, the only way out is to provide all the answers to millions watching and waiting. After all, it’s cricket.

Former acting PM of Trinidad and Tobago, Winston Dookeran, was in India last month. His political party, the COP has teamed up with the UNC to fight the May 24 elections in the Caribbean country. They will be pitted against the ruling PNM. Dookeran spoke to us about his experiences in India and what he can take away from the land of his ancestors.

We have an interview with K Mohandas, Secretary in the Ministry of Shipping. Port development is a huge area in India where billions of dollars are being invested by private parties through the PPP model. Mohandas tells us that in 2010-11, the Ministry has planned to award 21 projects with an outlay of Rs 14,000 crore. The number of projects and outlay would be higher in 2011-12. Surely, NRIs looking to be a part of India’s infrastructure growth can find opportunities here.

Happy reading.

Sayantan Chakravarty

Consulting Editor
Rakesh Krishnan

Head - Design and Layout
Jaydev Bisht

Contributions From
Steve Fox
Shobha Narayan
Rajeshwar Reddy

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