New Delhi: In a significant development, the Patiala House court of Delhi today discharged 36 accused including three tainted cricketers-S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan - of all the charges relating to IPL spot fixing.
"All are discharged (from the case)," Additional Sessions Judge Neena Bansal Krishna said while pronouncing the order.
All three cricketers were from IPL team Rajasthan Royals when the scandal came into light, they were arrested in May 2013 for alleged spot fixing in some matches of IPL-6.
Six persons, other than 36 accused, including underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and his aide Chhota Shakeel were declared proclaimed offenders.
The Judge had on May 23 reserved the order on framing of charges in the case for June 29 and asked the counsel appearing for the accused to file their written arguments, if any, by June 6.
The order was scheduled to pass the order on June 29, but was delayed as the ordersheet was not prepared.
Sreesanth, 32, broke down on hearing the order while the other accused including the players present in the courtroom started hugging each other.
Talking to PTI, Sreesanth said at last justice has been done to him, adding, "God willing, I will be able to return to cricket. I have no regrets, no complaints."
Special Cell of Delhi Police had named 42 accused in the case in its charge sheet out of whom six are absconding. Police had told the court that properties of Dawood and Shakeel in Mumbai have already been attached in connection with the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case and that they have not visited India since 1993.
Police had informed the court that Dawood had properties in his name at Dongri in Mumbai whereas Shakeel owned properties in Nagpada there.
The court had earlier issued non-bailable warrants against Dawood and Shakeel, Pakistan-based Javed Chutani, Salman alias Master and Ehteysham, who all are considered to be Dawood's associates.
The police had filed a 6,000-page charge sheet against various accused in the case. It had also filed supplementary charge sheet later on. The court had granted bail to Sreesanth, Chavan and other accused for lack of evidence against them under the provisions of stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA).
Other accused, including Chandila, were also granted bail later on by the court.
The police, in its charge sheet, had claimed that Dawood and Shakeel, who have been "controlling the fixing and betting market" in cricket in India, were behind IPL spot-fixing.