The world of cricket, film and underworld of bookies


    ( When entertainment becomes national obsession it is natural that more and more celebrities would be caught with their pants down––may be literally too. So apparently there is nothing unusual or surprising when cricketers like Sreesanth and others are arrested on the charge of betting. After all only recently other sportsmen were caught in a drug scandal and film-stars are often caught violating all sorts of the law of land.

    Even as Olympic bronze-medalist boxer Vijender Singh’s heroin story is about to subside came the big news from the world of cricket. In fact this should have come much earlier as betting is going on since long.

    The craze to become rich overnight is a natural corollary of the booming capitalism or corporatization. The philosophy of money begets money is very much in practice and there is no fear of being caught. When any game, for example, cricket in India, has become a religion and players demi-gods they start thinking that they are above law. So are our actors and actresses.

    The problem is not just that our celebrities are involved in betting and taking/smuggling drugs. There is more to these stories and that is of bigger concern. That is their link with the anti-national elements and underworld dons. If the allegations being levelled against them now is really true than they are directly or indirectly involved in much bigger crime. The mad craze of making money has turned them blind.

    Yet the big fish never get caught. Sometimes players do, as they are relatively soft target. For example, bookie Sanjeev Chawla is still at large and absconding 13 years after the infamous Hansie Cronje episode.

    Now come to the Bollywood world. When the cost of making film escalated the so-called greats did not mind at all to seek financial help from smugglers and mafia. What would have happened had there been a few less films in India. After all not so many cinemas are made in many countries of the world as in India.

    Similarly, we used to have enough of Test and One Day Crickets in the 21st century. But that did not satisfy us and we launched Indian Premier League. Though so much justification has been given to it the truth is that it hardly brought any good to the game of cricket in India.

    We produced Gavaskar, Vishwanath, Sardesai, Kapil Dev, Sachin, Dravid, Azhar, Ganguly, Kirmani, Prasanna, Bedi, Chandrashekar, Venkatraghavan, Dhoni, Zaheer, Sehwag, Irfan and so on and so forth before the advent of IPL. They were all world class players and came up when the number of domestic tournaments may have not been so much and cricket not as popular as now.

    So stating that IPL will produce more good cricketers is just a way to hide all the illegal acts in the name of promoting cricket.

    It is simply the product of marriage of convenience between the world of cricket and cinema with the underworld of mafias, smugglers and dons.

    Years back they were totally different industries.