In an interim relief to sports commentator Charu Sharma, the Bombay High Court has directed the city police not to file a charge sheet against him in a cheating case wherein a former Kabbadi player has accused him of “hijacking” his idea of Pro-Kabbadi League. A division bench of justices A S Oka and Anuja Prabhudessai, however, clarified that the investigation in the case has not been stayed.
“The police is free to proceed with the probe. The petitioner (Sharma) will have to extend his full cooperation to the police and submit all original documents pertaining to the case to the police immediately,” Justice Oka directed.
Sharma had approached the High Court seeking quashing of the FIR lodged against him by a former engineer and Kabbadi player Abhisek Ekal at the Bhoiwada police in 2015 claiming that the commentator and others “hijacked” his idea of Pro Kabbadi League.
The League is co-promoted by Sharma and industrialist Anand Mahindra and was launched in 2014.
On February 9, the High Court, while posting the petition for a final hearing, said, “The interim relief granted to Sharma earlier by restraining police from taking any coercive action in the matter shall continue. The police shall also not file a charge sheet in the case. But we clarify that the probe will go on.”
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Ekal claimed that he conceived the idea in 2012 and had approached Vishwas More, who was the joint secretary of Mumbai Sahar Kabbadi Association, to seek logistical support and also approached the International Kabbadi Federation.
In 2013, Ekal claims, he sent an information brochure to Piyush Pandey, executive chairman and creative director for India and South East Asia of Ogilvy and Mather, and to the marketing head of Mahindra & Mahindra seeking sponsorship.
In 2014, Ekal came to know that Mashal Sports and other corporate houses launched Pro Kabbadi League.
Ekal, in his complaint, said he tried to get in touch with Anand Mahindra and Pandey but in vain following which he lodged a complaint with the police.