Delhi Commonwealth Games chief arrested- 26 Apr 2011 00:00:00
Suresh Kalmadi, former chairman of the Delhi Commonwealth Games Organising Committee, has been arrested by Indian police and is reportedly set to be charged after a probe into allegations of widespread corruption at the 2010 event.
Dharini Mishra, spokeswoman for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), said Kalmadi will be put to a special judge on Tuesday and formally charged on several conspiracy counts relating to the awarding of commercial contracts.
On Monday Kalmadi, who is a member of the lower house of parliament, was suspended by India’s ruling Congress party, and was recently sacked as chairman of the Games organising committee as police investigated charges that the organisers had manipulated tenders and knowingly inflated costs.
The Games were clouded by venue delays, construction problems and budget overruns that saw the cost of the event triple.
After the Games ended, corruption allegations began around Kalmadi and his committee.
Mishra cited specific charges that organising officials had conspired to ensure a contract for a private Swiss firm to be the event’s official timekeeper by ‘wrongfully restricting and eliminating competition from other suppliers in a premeditated manner’.
A CBI team recently visited England to investigate allegations that at least one London-based firm was paid huge sums of money to provide basic services such as taxis and large television monitors.
Kalmadi has consistently protested his innocence, having been booed at the opening and closing ceremonies of the Games after becoming the public blame figure of the organisational problems.