CBI arrests Suresh Kalmadi

The CBI officially confirmed on Monday that ex-CWG OC chief Suresh Kalmadi had been found guilty of wrongdoings in the working of the Delhi Games and he had indeed given the tenders to certain ‘favoured’ companies.

Last Updated: Apr 25, 2011, 23:23 PM IST

New Delhi: Sacked CWG Organising Committee Chief Suresh Kalmadi was on Monday arrested by CBI on charges of cheating, conspiracy and corruption in connection with
awarding some Games contracts and the ruling Congress wasted
no time in suspending the Lok Sabha MP.

Six months after the end of the New Delhi Commonwealth
Games that was mired in controversies and scams, the CBI
finally closed in on 66-year-old Kalmadi, the CWG`s public
face, arresting him for allegedly awarding illegal contracts
to a Swiss firm for Timing-Scoring-Result (TSR) system for the
Games causing a loss of Rs 95 crore to the exchequer.

A beleaguered Kalmadi`s arrest was announced after his
more than four hours questioning at the CBI headquarters, his
fourth since December last, over the alleged irregularities
related to the award of contract to Swiss Timekeeping and the
Queens Baton Relay(QBR).

The agency also arrested two other OC officials
Surjeet Lal, Deputy Director General (Procurement) and A S
V Prasad, Joint Director General (Sports) in the same case.

Kalmadi, who came to the headquarters of the agency
here in the morning, was arrested at 1530 hours, a senior CBI
official said.

Kalmadi, an MP from Pune, and the two other officals
will be in CBI custody tonight and they will be produced in a
court tomorrow.

The CBI registered a case under section 120B
(conspiracy) read with Section 420 (cheating) IPC and other
relevant sections of Prevention of Corruption Act in the case,
an official said.

"The CBI has today arrested the then Chairman of OC of
Commonwealth Games-2010 for conspiracy to cause favour to a
private firm based in Switzerland in awarding the contract for
Timing, Scoring and Result system at an inflated cost of Rs
141 crore," CBI spokesperson Dharni Mishra told reporters.

Kalmadi`s arrest came weeks after his close aide and
OC`s Secretary General Lalit Bhanot and Director General V K
Verma were arrested in the same case. CBI officials said more
arrests would follow in the case.

Shortly after Kalmadi`s arrest was announced, AICC
general secretary Janardhan Dwivedi said the Congress has
suspended Kalmadi.

"The Disciplinary Committee(of the Congress has
suspended Suresh kalmadi from the membership of the party,"
Dwievedi said.

Problems also mounted for Kalmadi in the sphere of
sports administration after his arrest with the Union Sports
ministry writing a letter to the Indian Olympic Association
(IOA) asking it to consider appointing a new president to
replace him.

Opposition BJP and CPI-M said the arrest of Kalmadi was
"belated" and "just the tip of the iceberg" and that immediate
action should be taken against others involved in alleged
irregularities.

BJP`s Vijay Goel demanded the arrest of Delhi Chief
Minister Sheila Dikshit since she has been indicted by by the
Prime Minister-appointed V K Shunglu Committee that probed the
games.
BJP general secretary Vijay Goel said the arrest of
Kalmadi had come too late and demanded that those indicted in
the Shunglu Committee report, including Delhi Chief Minister
Shiela Dikshit, should also be put behind bars.

"It is now clear that the arrest of Kalmadi in the
Commonwealth Games scam has come very late. In a way though
the government appears to be taking action, it is not really
doing so," Goel told reporters.

Goel, who was forced to quit the CWG Organising
Committee after he expressed dissent over some issues,
claimed that on December 7, 2009, there were anomalies in the
Games preparations.

"They were not ready to accept the allegations of
corruption. Kalmadi was purposely given more time before his
arrest. Government delayed this action," he said.

He insisted that immediate action should be taken
against those found guilty by the V K Shunglu Committee.

"Why has Shiela Dikshit not been arrested though she was
found guilty by the Shunglu Committee. There was a loss of
crores of rupees due to the delay caused by the Chief Minister
and senior officials," Goel said.

The BJP leader also demanded action against the then
Urban Development Minister Jaipal Reddy and other officials.

"The Delhi government, CPWD, PWD, Organising Committee,
Urban Development Ministry and others were involved in CWG
scam," Goel alleged.

He sought to know from the CBI why it caused a delay of
three months in filing the charge sheet in the case.

Goel further alleged that the Shunglu Committee report
had been sent to the Union Home Ministry for "managing" the
CWG case.

Meanwhile, demanding Dikshit`s "immediate arrest" on the
basis of the Shunglu Committee report, Delhi BJP chief
Vijender Gupta alleged that bungling of Rs 1,500 crore was
committed at the level of the city government.

"The Chief Minister changed the rules of Finance
Department to commit bungling in the name of Games projects.

Shunglu Committee has found her directly responsible for
bungling on the basis of many documents," he claimed.

He also demanded seizing of all documents related to CWG
contracts given by the Delhi government.

PTI