Ranchi: A defiant Suresh Kalmadi refused to comment on his removal as Chairman of the Commonwealth Games Organising Committee but made it clear that he will not step down from his other post of Indian Olympic Association President.
Kalmadi, who was here in connection with the upcoming National Games, said the ongoing investigations into alleged irregularities in the conduct of the Commonwealth Games did not have any bearing on his role as IOA President.
"It has nothing to do with the Indian Olympic Association. The IOA General Body meeting will be held in Ranchi on February 12", he told reporters here, a couple of
hours after the government sacked him as the OC Chairman.
Kalmadi refused to give a direct reply to the sudden development. "Earlier also I had said that I am ready for an enquiry and it is going on. I can`t say much", he said.
Along with Kalmadi, his close aide Lalit Bhanot was also removed as Secretary General of the OC with immediate effect, almost three months after the sporting extravaganza was held in Delhi amid a spate of unsavoury controversies.
The decision to remove the two top officials was taken by the new Sports Minister Ajay Maken after taking legal opinion from the Attorney General.
Maken, who took charge of the Ministry barely five days ago, said that both Kalmadi and Bhanot have been removed in light of the ongoing investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) over allegations of corruption and irregularities in organisation and conduct of Commonwealth Games.
"In the light of the concerns expressed by the CBI and in the interest of impartial and unhindered investigations, it has been decided to remove Kalmadi from the position of the Chairman of the Organizing Committee and the position of Chairman, Executive Board of the organizing, CWG, with immediate effect", Maken said.
Kalmadi has been directed to handover charge to Jarnail Singh, Chief Executive Officer of the Organizing Committee, who is also a Member of the OC`s Executive Board, he added.