BCCI falls back on tried and tested Sawani

New Delhi, May 22 -- More than 13 years after he headed the probe into match-fixing in cricket, former Indian Police Service officer Ravi N Sawani has been approached by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for another inquiry -spot-fixing charges on Rajasthan Royals cricketers - S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan.

Sawani was joint-director of special crimes in the CBI then and had deputy inspector general YP Singh and superintendent of police M Ganapathy with him in his team.

"Sawani is fairly competent man who has vast experience in dealing with betting and fixing in cricket," says an IPS officer who once worked with him in the CBI.

Experience counts

Sawani's experience again came to his help when he landed the job of the general manager of International Cricket Council's Anti Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU) in 2007.

He was serving as additional director general of police in his parent cadre Tamil Nadu at that time. "Sawani had only three years of service left then and that didn't give enough time to angle for any of the top slots in his parent cadre or at the centre. Besides the money that the ICC was giving was also good.

"So he resigned from the IPS and joined the ICC office in Dubai," says another officer who knows him. After serving for five years in the ICC, when Sawani moved back to India in 2012, the BCCI roped him to head its own anti-corruption unit.

Legacy

"Before Sawani, the ICC had appointed a former CBI deputy superintendent of police NS Virk as one of the five regional security managers to keep tabs on fixing.

"Virk was also involved in the match-fixing probe of the CBI in 1999-2000. And after Sawani, his former DIG YP Singh succeeded him as general manager of the ACSU.

"So almost all the officers of the match-fixing probe team of the CBI in 2000 have now worked with the ICC," said a former CBI officer who didn't wish to be named.

Published by HT Syndication with permission from Hindustan Times.

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