BJP demands CBI probe into Tharoor's role in IPL auction

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New Delhi, Apr 13 (ANI): The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into Minister of State for External Affairs Shashi Tharoor's role in the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction.

Describing Tharoor's link with the new IPL team Kochi, the BJP said Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh should order a CBI probe and sack Tharoor.

BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said of Tharoor that, "It is a patent abuse authority by a Minister."

Tharoor is reportedly in trouble after IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi tweeted to reveal that Sunanda Pushkar, a close associate of Tharoor, had been gifted equity worth 70 crores in the new Kochi team which was sold for 1530 crores last month.

Further criticizing Tharoor, Prasad said, " Who gave Rs 70 crores equity to Sunanda Pushkar," adding that it is a serious case of corruption.

Modi in his email to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) chief Shashank Manohar had stated it was Tharoor who called him and instructed him not to reveal the identities of the stakeholders of the Kochi IPL franchisee.

Tharoor, however, has denied pressurising Modi.

"I deny Modi's allegation that I called him during his meeting with investors in the Kochi consortium in Bangalore in order to press him not to question the composition of the consortium," said Tharoor.

Tharoor said he had 'enough' of the controversy and went on to deny any monetary interest in the Kochi IPL team.

"I called Modi to ask why he was further delaying the approval of the franchise when all the legal requirements had been fulfilled. Modi had held up approval by the IPL of the franchisee agreement earlier by insisting on the reversal of a change in the document that he himself had earlier suggested", Tharoor said "This change was made, the consortium members flew to Bangalore and met Modi after that night's IPL game for what they had been told would be a routine exercise. Instead they were submitted to a barrage of questions, which led some to suspect that Modi was seeking a further excuse to delay approval. This was the reason for my intervention with Modi," he added.

In tweets on Monday, Modi has accused Tharoor of asking him not to investigate who makes up the Rendezvous Sports World group that led the consortium that bought the Kochi team.

Modi also revealed the details of the different partners and their stake in the Kochi team. (ANI)

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