IPLgate: Sharad Pawar backs Praful Patel

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IPLgate: Sharad Pawar backs Praful Patel
New Delhi:  Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar who is a major practitioner of power in Indian cricket has said he's willing to stand any inquiry into his alleged role in the Indian Premier League (IPL) controversy.

"There is a complaint that there has been some wrongdoing. Some responsible people have alleged this in parliament. The finance minister spoke of conducting an in-depth inquiry and he has started it. We welcome this because if there is a perception of wrong doing, then there should be an inquiry which clarifies matters," Pawar said.

Pawar also defended his lieutenant in his NCP, Praful Patel, stating that there's no need for Patel to resign.

"What is the complain about Praful Patel? What is the case about this paper? Was it a confidential paper, was it related to the Cabinet or was it some Government document? Whatever was sent to everyone else was also sent to him, but the way this case has not been handled too well," he said.

The Opposition has targeted both Pawar and Patel in Parliament for alleged illicit relations to the IPL.

Both men have been accused of trying to influence the auction of new IPL teams last month in favour of investors they allegedly supported.

Pawar has denied that his family has benefited financially in any way from his association with cricket (he is the former BCCI chief, and is currently President of the Maharashtra Cricket Association).

Patel has also been accused of a conflict of interest because his daughter, Poorna, works for the IPL. However, Patel told NDTV there he is not associated with cricket or the IPL.

Pawar said there is nothing murky in the IPL. The cricket league is currently undergoing a complete x-ray through different government agencies for money-laundering, tax evasion, proxy ownership and other financial crimes.

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