The Delhi Police has filed two separate charge sheets against Delhi & Districts Cricket Association secretary Vinod Tihara on allegations of being the kingpin of institutionalized age-fudging in state cricket.
On the basis of the investigation, Delhi Police has booked Tihara as well as one Naresh Jain, Principal of Vidya Jain Public School along with parents of players for offences under Sections 420 (cheating), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using electronically forged documents), 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 34 (criminal act by several person) of Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Tihara, who was earlier the Convenor of the all-powerful but now defunct DDCA Sports Committee, has had hundreds of allegations pertaining to corruption in team selections across all age-groups.
While he won the elections contesting for the Rajat Sharma group, he had fallen foul with the president within the first months on various cricket and administrative related issues. It included allegations of trying to control recruitment without following protocol and not doing due diligence.
However, an old case of age-fudging has now resurfaced and the crime branch of Delhi Police filed charge sheets in the Court of Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Tis Hazari Courts last week pertaining to allegations of allowing over-age players in lower age groups.
Along with Tihara, the Delhi Police has also filed charge sheets against eight parents of boys who were caught fudging their age.
“Eight parents of players are also charge sheeted,” a senior police official said.
It is learnt Delhi Police had earlier registered FIRs in the years 2014/2015 on the basis of complaints made by former Delhi skipper Kirti Azad against parents of players who were involved in producing fake birth certificates of their wards.
It has emerged in the police investigation that Tihara misused his position in DDCA with the aid of two institutions which he owned or managed, namely — Vidya Jain Public School and Lal Bahadur Shastri Cricket Club.
These two institutions provided an illegal platform for age manipulation and fraud which was made use of by certain unscrupulous parents to ensure that their children could play in the desired age group.
These parents got the age of their children changed in municipal records by fraud and got them admitted to Vidya Jain Public School to create proof of a fictitious date of birth which would be accepted in DDCA, thanks to Tihara.
In one of the charge sheets, it has been alleged that, during investigation, parents of a player admitted that their son used to play for Lal Bhadur Shastri Cricket Club, which was owned by Tihara.
The charge sheet further revealed that it was Tihara, who lured the parents into getting the age of their son changed with the help of Vidya Jain Public School and that it was he who convinced them that he had the powers to influence DDCA selections.