CWG corruption scandal: OC Executive Board meeting on Thursday

New Delhi: Rocked by allegations of
widescale corruption, the Commonwealth Games Organisng
Committee will hold an emergency meeting of its Executive
Board here on Thursday amid indications that a clean-up process
could be started.

The meeting was called by the OC`s embattled chairman
Suresh Kalmadi following a demand from some of his own
influential colleagues, including IOA Secretary General
Randhir Singh who said the allegations of financial
irregularities were "grave".

With the credibility of the OC taking a severe beating
with more and more scandals coming out in the past few days,
there is intense pressure on Kalmadi to start the cleansing

Kalmadi, who said that he is ready to face any CAG or
judicial probe into all the allegations, will have a lot of
answering to do at the Board meeting with many of his
colleagues pressing for stern action against those guilty.

A top source in the OC said that some members will press
for the immediate ouster of Deputy Director General T S
Darbari, whose name has figured in the investigations into
alleged irregularities into services provided during the
Queen`s Baton Relay in London.

The Sports Ministry had also sought Darbari`s removal
ever since his alleged customs violations were first reported
in the newspapers.

Kalmadi was forced to call the meeting after some of his
top colleagues said the allegations needed to be discussed

In a letter to Kalmadi, Randhir, who is also the OC
Vice-Chairman, said the meeting should be called immediately
considering the gravity of the allegations.

"In pursuance to media reports about financial
irregularities alleged in the Queen`s Baton Relay at the
Buckingham Palace, since the situation is grave, the
discussion should be held immediately," Randhir had said in
his letter.

Randhir was supported by OC treasurer Anil Khanna and IOA
vice-president V K Malhotra, who also wanted an immediate
meeting to discuss all the unsavoury developments.

Kalmadi`s own image has taken a hit after the Ministry of
External Affairs revealed that the e-mail from the Indian High
Commission he made public to justify payments to a UK-based
company was `doctored`.

Kalmadi met External Affairs Minister S M Krishna and was
confronted with the genuine e-mail from the High Commission in
UK which did not mention the name of the company, A M Films,
which was given a sum of over Rs three crore for providing
services during the Queen`s Baton Relay in London.

Under intense pressure from the government, the
Organising Committee formed a three-member panel to probe the
allegations of irregular financial transactions.

The panel comprises Jarnail Singh (OC Chief Executive
Officer), G C Chaturvedi (Special Director General- Finance),
and Gurjyot Kaur (Chief Vigilance Officer). The Committee will
submit its report by tomorrow.


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