The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has been ordered to conduct an impartial probe into Pakistan Super League (PSL) spot-fixing scandal without having influence from any side by Pakistan Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. An initial report on the PSL spot-fixing matter, which highlighted measures adopted during PSL games to redress the issue and also pointed out possibility of involvement of certain players, has been submitted by the FIA to Nisar.
Nisar has directed the FIA to complete the investigation at the earliest. In a statement, the Minister has said that it is not a matter of personal act of few cricketers but such issues affect the country’s reputation as well. “Therefore, detailed probe into this matter is necessary,” the Express Tribune quoted Khan as saying.
Earlier, a three-member tribunal was formed by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to investigate the spot-fixing case allegedly involving Sharjeel Khan and Khalid Latif in the PSL. The duo was suspended by the PCB under its Anti-Corruption Code, as part of an ongoing investigation into an international syndicate which was believed to corrupt the second edition of the PSL.
The pair responded to the official charges laid against them on Saturday. Both the cricketers, who play for Islamabad United franchise in the PSL, formally recorded their statements on February 18 before the anti-corruption unit of the cricket board.
The British Police have arrested three suspects in connection with the case including discarded Pakistan opener Nasir Jamshed, who was released on bail. It is said that those responsible for spot-fixing would be determined after going through information provided by the PCB and examining the forensic evidence.
As per media reports, both the cricketers have denied the match fixing charges but have admitted to meeting the alleged fixer on the recommendation of a former Pakistani Test player. If convicted both players face life bans for violating the board’s anti-corruption code by allegedly meeting a suspicious man linked to an international betting syndicate. They were provisionally suspended last month but both deny the charges.
According to the PCB officials who are looking into the matter, the suspended players are expected to receive a ban minimum ban of one year for the breach of PCB’s Anti-Corruption Code even if any fixing charges are not proven against them. As per the board officials, a disciplinary committee would be formed by the PCB decide about the punishment if both players confess to all the charges levelled against them.
However, if they deny these charges then a trial court would be set up by the PCB’s Anti-Corruption unit under chair of a former judge and with representation of one former player to investigate the matter.