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HindustanTimes Thu,30 Oct 2014

Commonwealth Games corruption: OC faces about Rs. 350cr worth legal cases

PTI  New Delhi, October 06, 2013
First Published: 16:12 IST(6/10/2013) | Last Updated: 16:17 IST(6/10/2013)

Nearly three years after the conclusion of Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, the scam-hit organising committee is contesting two dozen legal cases involving a revenue of about Rs. 350 crore against private companies which executed projects related to the mega-sporting event.

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"There are about 24 cases related to the Commonwealth Games pending in courts or undergoing arbitration. The total revenue involved in them is about Rs. 350 crore," chief executive officer of the games organising body Jarnail Singh said.

The cases, filed in various courts here and outside Delhi, relates to dispute in finance, workforce, catering, merchandising, cleaning and waste management, technology and other functional areas.

"We are contesting cases and challenged the demand of money raised by the firms. Some of these contracts were not executed as per the conditions agreed upon. There is huge government revenue involved in them. How can we let go," said Singh when asked when the organising body would be wound up.

A skeleton staff of 45 people are working in the OC, which once had about 1,500 work force, with most of them assisting legal firms or lawyers engaged in contesting cases under arbitration or being heard by the court.

At least 37 government departments have spent over Rs. 13,000 crore in 9,000 publicly-funded CWG-related projects.

The Organising Committee, which conducted the Commonwealth Games from October 3-14, 2010, has been given space in Jawaharlal Nehru stadium.

"The space has been allocated to us. The National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC) Ltd will develop it to suit OC needs. The shifting of OC office will be done then," he said.

Meanwhile, the government has started to acquire portions in the swanky nine-storey OC headquarters at 1, Jai Singh Road for some of its departments.

Certain departments of the Prime Minister's Office, ministry of home affairs and ministry of external affairs among others have been allotted floors in the building.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA), which was functioning from make-shift office at District Centre in Jasola, has also got space in the state-of-the-art building in the city's heart.

Law and enforcement agencies, including CBI, ED, Income Tax department and CVC, are probing various financial irregularities in the execution of several CWG contracts allegedly done by OC's former chairman Suresh Kalmadi and Secretary General Lalit Bhanot among others.

Government agencies have also detected tax evasion by private firms in execution of CWG-related contracts. The notices demanding at least Rs. 240 crore have already been issued by the finance ministry and a recovery of about Rs. 67.33 crore has been effected from them.


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