TIGHT SECURITY FOR INDIA IPL MATCH IN MUMBAI

By NBF News
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Police say they are not leaving anything to chance

Security is tight at the Mumbai (Bombay) stadium where the semi-finals of the Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket tournament are to be held.

The match was shifted to Mumbai after two small bombs at the weekend outside the original venue in Bangalore.

Police say at least 3,000 security personnel will ring the Mumbai stadium and every spectator will be checked.

The IPL has been hit by controversy in recent days with allegations of corruption and financial bungling.

On Sunday, Shashi Tharoor resigned as junior foreign minister following his public spat with Lalit Modi, the head of the IPL, over ownership of the Kochi team.

It was alleged that a woman friend of Mr Tharoor's had received a free stake in the team. Mr Tharoor denies any wrongdoing.

Indian authorities are investigating the financing of the tournament and media reports suggest there are plans to force Lalit Modi from office.

'All precautions'
Special security arrangements have been put in place for the first of the semi-finals on Wednesday, Mumbai police chief AN Roy told the BBC.

“We have taken all precautions and every single spectator will be frisked before entering the stadium.”

The IPL is the world's richest cricket tournament
More than 2,000 policemen and armed commandos and 1,000 private security guards have been deployed to secure the ground.

At least 60 metal detectors have been installed and closed-circuit cameras will keep an eye on every corner of the stadium, police say.

DY Patil stadium in Navi Mumbai is one of the finest in the country, with a seating capacity of 55,000.

The stadium, inaugurated in 2008, hosted the IPL final that year.

The stadium will host semi-final matches on Wednesday and Thursday, before the third place play-off on Saturday and the final on Sunday.

The venue was switched after two small bombs went off outside Bangalore's Chinnaswamy Stadium before last Saturday's IPL game between Bangalore Royal Challengers and Mumbai Indians.

A third device was defused on Sunday.
All three devices were hidden in the stadium's perimeter wall and the two explosions injured 15 people.

The IPL has become a multi-billion dollar industry, which attracts some of India's wealthiest businessmen and women.

On Tuesday, Mr Tharoor told India's parliament that he had done nothing “improper or unethical” and that he resigned because he did not want to be “an embarrassment” to the government.

Opposition lawmakers in parliament alleged that the multi-billion dollar cricket league was used for money laundering and illegal betting.

IPL chief Lalit Modi denies any allegations of funding irregularities. He has described the claims as “absolutely baseless”.