In a sensational revelation that could cause more trouble to Lalit Modi, it has emerged that the former IPL boss may have stakes in the IPL team Kings XI Punjab, reports The Indian Express. However, members from both camps have rubbished the allegations.
The newspaper claims that it has established a connection between Modi and Kings XI co-owner Preity Zinta, over the ownership pattern of the IPL franchise. The daily had earlier accessed emails sent by an Australian-based attorney to Lalit and his brother Samir which contained an attachment which seemed to signal the former’s alleged 'beneficial interest' in as many as three IPL franchises.
“They will jointly own the beneficial interest currently owned by Lalit in three IPL teams, provided, however that in the event Lalit and Samir agree not to jointly own the Acquired K K Trust Assets and instead, they separately take and hold their share of the acquired KK Trust Assets, then as soon as Samir receives his share of the Acquired K K Trust Assets, his interest in the IPL teams will be transferred back to Lalit,” Attorney Dean Kino's e-mail read.
Examining a series of further e-mail transactions between the parties involved indicates a direct connection between Modi, Preity Zinta, other stakeholders in Kings XI Punjab and Sanjivan Sahani, who is employed by Modi.
“Let’s agree to sell. Please communicate with Mohit,” Modi had written to Sahani on November 22, 2014. This email was in response to another mail that Zinta sent to Modi the previous day, in which were clear references of a possible “deal” and included a short note: “Hey Lalit, FYI.”
In that particular email, Zinta had written: “The email below is self-explanatory and next week we will get the other paperwork and (the) final timeline to move ahead with this deal. This person has been vetted by the BCCI also and is a decent businessman with a Punjabi background. Let me know your thoughts and pls keep this to yourselves as no one should know about (it) till the deal is done and signed off by us and BCCI. He is also ready to put money in escrow as we move forward so let’s make this happen and close it."
Sources close to Modi and Zinta deny allegations
Contacts from both Modi and Zinta's team quickly rubbished reports about the ownership stake of Modi with a KXIP spokesperson claiming that the alleged deal was just a general inquiry.
A spokesperson for Modi responded justifying the email content: “Lalit Modi has been known to the stakeholders of KXIP because when the IPL was established by him in 2008, KXIP was one of the allotted teams. Due to his knowledge on the subject, a general enquiry was made by the stakeholders about an offer they had received from an interested party. There is nothing more to it.”
Shortly after IPL 2010 ended, Modi, then IPL chairman, was suspended from BCCI after being accused of misconduct, indiscipline, and financial irregularities. The board launched an investigation against him and banned him for life in 2013 after a committee found him guilty of these charges. He is presently a wanted man by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), for his alleged role in money-laundering and irregularities in IPL contracts.Published 18 Sep 2015, 19:18 IST