Justice Qayyum of Pakistan’s match-fixing inquiry dies aged 79

Justice Malik Mohammad Qayyum, the Pakistan excessive court docket decide who headed the inquiry that ultimately led to life bans for Saleem Malik and Ata-ur-Rehman and implicated quite a few different Pakistani gamers within the first wave of match-fixing within the late Nineteen Nineties and early 2000s, has died. He was 79.
Justice Qayyum was a distinguished determine within the Pakistan authorized neighborhood, as a senior decide within the Lahore High Court, a former Attorney General in addition to a president of the Supreme Court Bar Association. To the broader world, and positively to the cricketing one, he’ll ceaselessly be remembered as the person who headed probably the most complete inquiries into match-fixing anyplace, and because the writer of the next report – now identified merely because the Qayyum Report.

In the report, revealed after some delay in May 2000, Justice Qayyum banned Malik and Rehman for all times from the sport, and censured Wasim Akram, Mushtaq Ahmed, Waqar Younis, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Akram Raza and Saeed Anwar with financial fines in addition to suggestions, in some circumstances, to restrict their involvement within the sport. The report was the results of a year-long inquiry, between September 1998 and September 1999, held in a court docket room on the Lahore High Court.

In the centre courtroom, Justice Qayyum carried out over 40 hearings and heard the testimonies and proof of almost 70 gamers and ex-players, directors and ex-administrators – together with almost all of Pakistan’s greatest stars on the time. The report was prepared a couple of weeks after the ultimate hearings however due to the sensitivity of its contents, in addition to ensuing political turmoil – General Pervez Musharraf instigated a army coup in October 1999, throwing out the democratic authorities of the day – it was not made public till May 2000, whereas Pakistan had been touring the Caribbean. The day after it was revealed started probably the most thrilling Tests in Pakistan’s historical past, the one-wicket loss to West Indies in Antigua through which Akram – a distinguished presence within the Qayyum report – took 11 wickets.
At the time, the report was seen in a broadly optimistic mild, acknowledged as the primary occasion of a board conducting a radical investigation into corruption within the sport. Some critics, nevertheless, argued it did not go far sufficient in punishing gamers, a way that was bolstered a couple of years later when Justice Qayyum, in an interview with ESPNcricinfo, admitted {that a} “soft corner” for Akram may need performed a component within the sanctions he was handed out – a high quality of PKR 300,000 and a suggestion that he by no means captain Pakistan once more.

Justice Qayyum, and Ali Sibtain Fazli, the lawyer who labored with him by the inquiry, argued, nevertheless, that the character of the inquiry meant the yardsticks for punishment fell someplace between a felony and civil case. Hard proof had all the time been missing for harsher punishments, however the sheer weight of testimonies meant one thing needed to be executed; the consequence was the extra measured sentences that got here out. As Justice Qayyum concluded within the report itself, “…it must also be added that this Commission is aware of what consequences a preliminary, tentative finding of guilt in this Report will have on the career of a player. If this Report is released to the public, a finding of guilt are likely to effectively amount to a conviction. The player is likely to lose his livelihood for the time being and possibly the prime of his career.”

As an indicator of Justice Qayyum’s centrality to the nation’s proceedings on the time, he was additionally the sitting decide in an notorious case of political corruption in opposition to the late Benazir Bhutto and her husband Asif Zardari concurrently the match-fixing inquiry was operating.

Source web site: www.espncricinfo.com

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