Saga of dos, don'ts, and strict vigil - Eden security at its height

Kolkata, May 24 (IANS) CCTV cameras prying all-around, strict vigil on movement around players' dressing rooms and heightened security -- the Eden Gardens stood fortified as it hosted the playoff match of the IPL Friday amid the raging spot fixing scam.

With stringent security in place after the latest scandal to hit Indian cricket came to light, players have been barred from allowing any women other than their wives in their hotel rooms in the run up or after Friday's play-off or Sunday's final, a Cricket Association of Bengal source said.

Over 200 closed circuit cameras were installed all over the stadium, with the police keeping a special watch on the lower tier of the B.C. Roy Club House, the closest to the playing arena, to pick up any communication between the spectators and the players - even in the form of gestures - that could facilitate any betting or fixing.

Sleuths of the city police and the special task force (STF) including plain clothed cops kept a hawk's eye on the proceedings during the playoff between Rajasthan Royals and Mumbai Indians.

Strict vigil is also being kept on those present in the VIP boxes at the stadiums.

The players have been advised not to move out of the team hotel without being accompanied by cops.

According to a senior police officer, people other than team members and the support staff have been banned from meeting the players whether at the team hotel or at the stadium.

The police have informed the various stake holders, including the cricket administrators, regarding the security guidelines.

The sensational spot fixing case came to light after Delhi Police arrested Rajasthan Royals cricketers S. Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan and 11 bookies in a post-midnight operation in Delhi, Mumbai and Ahmedabad May 16.

Actor Vindu Dara Singh of Bollywood was arrested Tuesday for his connections with betting.

Kolkata came under the scanner after the arrest of a film producer - Ajit Surekha - for being an alleged bookie.

Surekha and nine of his associates were nabbed Wednesday night from their hideout in the Ultadanga area of north Kolkata during a joint operation by police's special task force and detective department.

While probe was on regarding their involvement in the ongoing IPL spot fixing controversy, initial investigation has revealed they bet on a match between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings.

A Cricket Association of Bengal official said there will be elaborate checking and frisking for the two matches.


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