Sunday, May 25, 2008

IPL's Ness in Mess with Punjab Police

Panga with police anywhere can get you in a jam, but Panga with Punjab Police and you are the jam. Some one should have warned Ness not to mess with Punjab Police (PP).

His recent spat with the Local SSP Khatra is has set the clash of egos rolling. The local interest has shifted from the IPL match to the match between the SSP and Ness. Although the result will probably be a draw but lot of boundaries will be broken before the dust settles.

Wadia who owns the Mohali IPL team along with Bollywood actress Preity Zinta and two others, had a spat with Khatra Friday.

"I want to talk to you" said Ness to the SSP and then all hell broke loose. The two had a heated argument when Wadia leveled serious allegations against the police. He had alleged that the police was marketing tickets in black and had stolen T- shirts and liquor. He had also alleged that the police were terrorising his men deployed in the stadium.

Objecting to the allegations Khatra tried to reason with Wadia. (if Ness was in a police station he would have discovered how Punjab Police reasons with people)

SSP said Wadia used derogatory language against him and against Punjab police, in particular charging the police of selling tickets for the IPL matches in the grey market and also ignoring unauthorized entry of people into the stadium.

Khatra said Wadia not only shouted at him but also said he(Ness) would not 'speak to small and mean people like him'.

The police official said Wadia insulted him in the presence of several people even as he tried to reason out the issue with him.

Now Punjab Police has opened its IPL innings with sending a bill of Rs. 1.8 crore for providing security for IPL T20 Tournament. This bill has to be settled before the last IPL match to be played on May 28.

The Punjab Police have raised the amount for providing security for the IPL matches at the PCA Stadium in Mohali and the Deputy Commissioner has been asked to ensure that security is provided only if the organisers pay the amount since it is a commercial venture.

A letter written by Khatra to his seniors (Punjab Home Secretary, Punjab DGP, IG (Zone) Patiala, DIG (Patiala Range) states, “The IPL has been engaged in a cross commercial activity, therefore, it is inevitable that they have to be charged for the services rendered by the Punjab Police.

On April 25, Modi, IPL Commissioner, was allegedly smoking in the lounge room in the stadium, which is considered to be a public place. At this SHO requested him not to smoke at the public place, since it is banned. Later a DDR was lodged by police against Modi for smoking in a public place.

Accordingly, a Daily Dairy Report (DDR) dated April 26 was recorded in Phase VIII Police Station which also stated that Ness was found smoking.

According to the DDR, when Khatra entered the stadium to supervise the security arrangements, Ness was present at the reception. He (Ness) said, “He wanted to talk to me regarding an earlier match. He alleged that the Mohali police were selling the IPL tickets in black and some people were allowed entry in the stadium without tickets.”

“However, I emphatically contradicted the allegations and said that only 50 per cent tickets were sold and the tickets for the match were being sold from the counters, so how can police black market the tickets and who will buy them? As for the entry without ticket is concerned, private security of 300 personnel is deployed at the gates, so how can any lapses take place. The police is only to maintain law and order,” stated the DDR.

Khatra alleged, “It has been closely observed during the IPL matches that these were not played with the spirit to boost sports, however, it is established that the people connected with this tournament i.e. players, owners and BCCI have engaged to have pecuniary gains,” said the SSP adding that IPL had engaged in a cross-commercial activities.

When contacted the Deputy Commissioner confirmed that he had received the letter from the SSP. “Suitable action would be taken after the panchayat elections,” he said. Ness Wadia could not be contacted despite repeated attempts.

The SSP has sent a copy of the letter to the Punjab home secretary, the DGP, the IG Zone and the DIG range.

Whats a little booze here n there when Punjab police is around, Ness should consider himself lucky they did not take Priety Zinta away. I think Ness should start looking for an alternate venue for next years IPL matches since Mohali police will play a different ball game from now on.

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