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Virat Kohli faces conflict of interest probe

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India captain Virat Kohli faces an inquiry into a potential conflict of interest over his positions in two business ventures.

DK Jain, ethics officer for the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said late on Sunday that a complaint by a state association member will be examined.

Sanjeev Gupta, a member of the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association, has alleged that Kohli's various posts are in violation of the BCCI rules that bar an individual from holding multiple positions.

"I have received a complaint. I will examine it and then see if the case is made out or not," Jain was quoted as saying by the Indian media.

"If yes, then I have to afford an opportunity to him (Kohli) to respond."

Gupta said that Kohli's co-directors at Virat Kohli Sports (LLP) and Cornerstone Venture Partners (LLP) were also directors in Cornerstone Sport and Entertainment Private Limited, a talent agency that contracts Indian cricketers and handles their branding and commercial interests.

"Shri Virat Kohli is occupying two posts at a time in blatant violation to BCCI Rule 38 (4) approved by Supreme Court Of India," read Gupta's complaint in an email.

"As such, he must relinquish his one post at once in compliance. His two posts are covered as under: A - 38(4)(a) - Player and B - 38(4)(o) - Contractual Entity, to be read with BCCI Rule 38(1) (iii)."

The email further explains: "VIRAT KOHLI SPORTS LLP company have two Directors/Owners namely, Shri Virat Kohli & Shri Amit Arun Sajdeh," the complaint read. "CORNERSTONE VENTURE PARTNERS LLP company have three Directors/Owners namely, Shri Virat Kohli, Shri Amit Arun Sajdeh & Shri Binoy Bharat Khimji.

"Shri Amit Arun Sajdeh & Shri Binoy Bharat Khimji are also Director/Owners of CORNERSTONE SPORT AND ENTERTAINMENT PRIVATE LIMITED," which, the email further stated, "contracts members of the Indian Team."

Gupta had previously filed conflict of interest complaints against Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid. All the three former players were served notices based on the complaints, but they were eventually cleared.

Feature image courtesy: AFP / Peter Parks

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