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MHA gives nod to draft Prevention of Sporting Fraud Bill

"We have sent back the draft bill to the Sports Ministry with our approval," a Home Ministry official said.

Press Trust Of India

Updated:April 27, 2014, 11:46 AM IST
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MHA gives nod to draft Prevention of Sporting Fraud Bill
"We have sent back the draft bill to the Sports Ministry with our approval," a Home Ministry official said.

New Delhi: The Home Ministry has given its nod to a draft bill that envisages to check spot-fixing and illegal betting in sporting events, and mulls a maximum of five years' imprisonment for such crimes.

The draft Prevention of Sporting Fraud Bill, prepared by the Sports Ministry in consultation with the Law Ministry, got the Home Ministry's approval recently. The bill aims to "cleanse sports" in the country.

"We have sent back the draft bill to the Sports Ministry with our approval," a Home Ministry official said.

The Sports Ministry is now expected to prepare a note for the Cabinet for its approval before being placed in Parliament to make it a law. "A final decision will be taken by the new government," the official said.

According to the draft bill, a person is said to commit an offence of sporting fraud if he, directly or indirectly "manipulates or tries to manipulate result, irrespective of whether the outcome is actually altered or not, or "deliberately misapplies the rules of the sport".

Besides, "removing or reducing all or part of the uncertainty normally associated with the results of a sporting event" and who "wilfully fails to perform to his true potential, unless such under performance can be attributed to strategic or tactical reason deployed in the interest of that sport or team, that will also be considered as fraud".

Disclosure of "insider information" and "failure to disclose knowledge of or attempt for sporting fraud" will also fall in the category of sports fraud.

Maximum punishment that has been proposed in the draft bill is imprisonment for five years and a fine of Rs 10 lakh or five times the economic benefits derived by the person from sporting fraud, whichever is greater.

Whoever attempts to commit offence of sporting fraud shall be punishable with the same punishment as provided for the offence. A person who abets the commission of sporting fraud shall be punishable with the same punishment as provided for the offence.

No court inferior to that of a Metropolitan Magistrate or Judicial Magistrate of the first class shall try any offence punishable under this Act.

Justice (retd) Mukul Mudgal, who chaired the committee investigating the IPL spot-fixing and betting scandal, also headed the panel that framed the draft of the bill, as per directions from the Sports Ministry.

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