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PM refers Shunglu report on Lalli to CBI

In a quick follow up action, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday referred to CBI the Shunglu Committee report that had indicted suspended Prasar Bharti chief B S Lalli in the award of broadcasting rights of Commonwealth Games.



New Delhi: In a quick follow up action,
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday referred to CBI the
Shunglu Committee report that had indicted suspended Prasar
Bharti chief B S Lalli and Doordarshan Director General Aruna
Sharma in the award of broadcasting rights of Commonwealth
Games causing Rs. 135 crore loss to the exchequer.

Sharma, who belongs to the Madhya Pradesh cadre of IAS,
has also been directed to be reverted back to the state.
Prime Minister, who is away in Guwahati today, issued
directions from there to seek explanations from Lalli and
Sharma on the allegations and recommend appropriate action
within two weeks.

A fortnight after the first report of the high level
committee headed by former CAG V K Shunglu pointed to the loss
of Rs 135 crore in the award of the contract, a PMO release
said the Prime Minister decided to refer the report to the
CBI.

He took the decision after considering the report on the
Host Broadcasting Issues related to the Commonwealth Games and
the report given by Cabinet Secretary K M Chandrasekhar.

In its report, the committee fixed the responsibility
for providing "undue benefit" to Sis Live and Zoom
Communications primarily on Lalli and Sharma and said they
cannot be recused from the acts of omission and commission
which facilitated this wrong doing.

The committee had also said certain actions seem to
attract penal provisions under IPC and the Prevention of
Corruption Act which needs to be separately investigated.
The PMO directed the Information and Broadcasting
Ministry to seek explanations from Lalli and Sharma on the
allegations made against them and recommend an appropriate
course of action within two weeks.

He also directed the ministry to review the claims
made by M/s SIS LIVE, jointly with Prasar Bharati and in
consultation with their financial advisers to ensure that
there is no over-payment.

"In the event of any over-payment having been made, the
Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has been directed to
take appropriate action for recovery, after seeking due legal
advice," the release said.

The Prime Minister decided to refer matters relating to
the relationship between the government and the Prasar Bharati
and that between its CEO and its Board as also issues
regarding the governance structure and the oversight mechanism
put in place by the Ministry in respect of such events, to the
Group of Ministers headed by the Finance Minister.

The GoM is being directed to expedite its work so that
necessary corrective administrative and legislative measures
could be put in place at the earliest, the release said.

PTI

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