Rauf refuses to go to India to face charges

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Pakistani umpire Asad Rauf will not be going to India to confront charges of match-fixing laid against him by the Mumbai Police, with his lawyer saying the former ICC official's character is being 'assassinated'.

Pakistani umpire Asad Rauf will not be going to India to confront charges of match-fixing laid against him by the Mumbai Police, with his lawyer saying the former ICC official's character is being 'assassinated'.

Rauf was charged by the Mumbai police, who allege he accepted gifts from bookies during the IPL, gave them match information, and even bet on games himself while standing in them. But Rauf's lawyer says the charges are bogus, and they won't dignify them with a trip to India.

Rauf's lawyer, Syed Ali Zafar, said: "All the allegations reported in media are baseless. We don't have any charge sheet and only have the press reports that have no legal value or importance at the moment.

"So we think it is just a conspiracy by Mumbai Police to defame his [Rauf] and the country's name. We think Mumbai Police is indulging in character assassination.

"He is a well-known, professional, competent Pakistani umpire. Whatever is being reported in press is all false and I strongly deny it on behalf of Asad Rauf.

"Asad Rauf has full confidence in Indian courts but he has no faith in Mumbai Police and at the moment we are not confident going to India. For Asad Rauf the situation is not right in India – they could detain him, they can frame other charges.

"But if Mumbai Police goes to the ICC's anti-corruption unit or approaches [the concerned] authorities in Pakistan, we will then provide witnesses and give our point of view."

Rauf himself addressed the charge of gifts, saying the bags confiscated at the airport were filled with religious items, not the lavish presents the charge sheet alleges.

He said: "I challenge Mumbai Police, that they should open the bag in the court and produce lavish watches and gold and show it to the whole world. There are some religious things in them, which are most important to me.

"I can confirm with full confidence that there wasn't any expensive jewelry in my bags, they contained chaadars (cotton sheets) brought from different shrines from Baghdad and various other holy cities. We have written to the authorities to reclaim my stuff.

"As far as exchanging gifts is concerned, it's not a crime. Mumbai Police should have realised that the subcontinent has its culture and we give gifts. It's a tradition in Pakistan and even in India.

"There are lots of instances when people do come from India [to Pakistan], go to shops and the shopkeepers don't take the money from the guests."

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