Monday, 20 May 2013

India is Cricket, Cricket is India


The way cricket is being played and is being played up by the media reminds me of the famous quote of the late lamented Debkank Barooah, the then AICC President who had said “India is Indira and Indira is India”. True, Cricket is the most popular game in the country. It was popular earlier as well. Take some 50 years ago in the 1960s when there was no television, people would throng around radio set in tea and paan shop to listen to the ball to ball commentary of test mach. But never before, it got the attention of the media as it is getting today.

For the last ten days, the match fixing news have hogged the headlines of all the television news channels big and small as well as all newspapers in all languages as if nothing happening in the world except cricket. To say that more than 120 crores people of India have been cheated by the players involved in the match fixing is not only far from truth but ludicrous to say the least. The IPL is all about big money. Neither the government of the day nor the media are interested in going into all pervasive corruption and illegality in running the show of cricket. The ruling elite controls the cricket corporate, be it the BCCI or the IPL it is replete with slush money. And in India nobody in power or in authority is interested in eliminating the slush and easy money being generated by the show. This is not to suggest that the match fixing news should not be highlighted. I should but not to the extent it is being played up currently. The format of the IPL veers around big money and so is the media of the day. To survive in the business one has to do as others do.

One more important aspect is policing the betting in the game. Law alone can’t stop the betting business. I read a small news buried on inside page of a national daily that said Iran executed two persons who were found guilty of spying for Israel and the CIA. Knowing that there is a death penalty for spying in Iran, people true or false accused of spying were not deterred by the harsh punishment for the crime. They went ahead and committed the crime. Likewise, the arrest of three cricket players in the match fixing is unlikely to deter some other cricketers who are prone to under take the slush money to throw up the match.

The cricketers involved in the fixing charge were well paid. The fee running into millions of rupees. Yet, they were lured to the crime syndicate of satta operators.

“Lust of easy money takes you to the gallows”.

~ by R.K.Sinha

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