Delhi Police seek open NBWs for Dawood, Chhota Shakeel

New Delhi, June 7 (IANS) Delhi Police Friday moved an application before a city court seeking open non-bailable warrants (NBWs) against underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Shakeel in connection with the IPL spot fixing case.

“It has come to our notice that the main bookies and fixers were in touch with Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Shakeel… They gave directions to bookies and fixers in India…,” the special cell of Delhi Police said in the application filed before Additional Sessions Judge Vinay Kumar Khanna.

The matter has been posted for hearing on June 10.

The court also heard arguments on bail pleas of eight accused including suspended cricketer S. Sreesanth and his Rajasthan Royals teammate Ankeet Chavan, who have been booked under the provisions of Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) along with other accused.

Appearing for Sreesanth, senior counsel Pinaki Misra, also a member of Lok Sabha, questioned the police move of invoking MCOCA against the player, saying “monumental injustice has been done by invoking MCOCA”, and that it has been brought in by Delhi Police “only to make the case look glamourous”.

“Can there even be an iota of evidence to invoke MCOCA,” Misra asked. The only thing against Sreesanth, he said, was “the unique signal he is said to have given in tucking the towel”. “Even a cricketer like Dravid tucks his towel while playing,” he added.

“There were five to six occasions when he tucked his towel. We should not forget they are playing in temperatures as high as 42 degrees Celsius. He is a fast bowler with a speed of 135 km per hour,” Misra said.

He said the batsman could only score four runs of the first four ball in the allegedly fixed over. “Why would have Sreesanth waited for last two balls to give away a total of 14 runs if he was fixed?” Misra argued.

Refuting the police allegation that bookies paid Sreesath’s bills, he presented the player’s bank statement for the last two months before the court.

He said the bank statement shows ATM withdrawals from Sreesanth’s bank accounts for payment of parties he was hosting.

The counsel appearing for cricketer Ankeet Chavan also refuted the allegation of police that he has underworld connection.

The bail pleas of both the accused were opposed by additional public prosecutor Rajiv Mohan.

Filing its response on the bail pleas, Delhi Police said: “During investigation it was revealed that all the spot/session fixing activities were going on in a well organised and clandestine manner. The rates of the bets were being conveyed to the major bookies from abroad.”

It added: “A large number of persons from India as well as abroad were placing their bets with these mega bookies and their several subsidiary chains of bookies resulting in the generation of huge amounts of money on a daily basis. All the settlement of accounts was being done using illegitimate hawala channels.”

The prosecution also told the court that Dawood has also been declared “international terrorist” and is facing stringent United Nations Security Council sanctions. The police response said that Dawood played a pivotal role in running organised criminal activities against strategic and economic security of India and its citizens.

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