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5 Apr 2021 faisan

BCCI ACU chief supports government not legalising betting in India

Betting has not been legalised by the Indian government so far, with the board recently directing the state governments to form their own legislature to control Real-Money Gaming. Many industry insiders feel that legalising betting will bring in massive revenues for the government in the form of taxes.

However, that has found a taker in BCCI's new Anti-Corruption Unit chief Shabir Hussein Shekhadam Khandwawala, who, as a police officer, feels that the government has done right by not legalising betting.

"Whether the government legalises betting or not that is a different matter but deep inside, I feel, as a police officer, that betting can lead to match-fixing. The government, so far, has rightly not legalised betting," the 70-year-old told PTI.

"Betting encourages match-fixing. So there should not be any change on this, we can make the rules more strict. We will work on that. It is a matter of great prestige that cricket is largely free of corruption. Credit should go to BCCI for that."

Earlier, BCCI's outgoing head of ACU and former board president Anurag Thakur suggested that legalising betting is another way of controlling corruption in the game. However, Khandwawala is completely contrasting in his approach.

"Betting might be legal in some countries but the people who go into stadiums to watch the game and watch it on television believe in this game and don't go to grounds thinking this game could be fixed. We need to protect their belief that the game is free of all corruption."

"Our top players are so well paid that they are miles from the menace of match-fixing. We should feel proud about that.

"Rooting out corruption from smaller events and leagues is a big challenge and we need to put an end to it. We need to ensure there is nothing shady happening at all levels of cricket being played in the country. Besides detecting and preventing any shady activity is very important," he said.

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